Monday, February 23, 2009
We all know that the FDA mandates strict guidelines for food quality and safety, right? Have you ever read any of those guidelines, though? In light of the following, perhaps those guidelines truly are more guidelines than actual rules.
Were you aware of these examples of what is acceptable and permissible by the FDA?
* Canned mushrooms may contain "over 20 or more (whatever the hell that means) maggots of any size per 100 grams of drained mushrooms; or 5 or more maggots 2 millimeters or longer per 100 grams of drained mushrooms
* Tomato juice may contain 10 or more fly eggs per 100 grams, or 5 or more fly eggs and 1 or more maggots
That "or more" wording just kills me. 1 or more maggots could mean 1,000 maggots, because 1,000 is more than 1!
Other allowable "nasty" levels:
* curry powder - 100 or more insect parts per 25 grams
* ground thyme - up to 925 or more insect parts per 10 grams
* ground pepper - up to 475 insect parts per 50 grams
* sauerkraut - up to 50 thrips (tiny winged bugs)
* beer - may contain as many as 2,500 plant lice per 10 grams of hops
* an 18-ounce jar of peanut butter may contain 145 bug parts, or 5 or more rodent hairs, or 125 milligrams of grit
Bottom line, we may eat a pound or two of flies, maggots, and bug parts every year without even knowing it. Are you feeling sick yet? Sorry.