The Scary Truth About Food Labeling
If you bought pre-cut watermelon last month… pay attention.
It might kill you.
It’s an absurd idea – that consumers are just now learning about tainted food, a month after they probably ate it.
It says a lot about what ails us.
As we explore the Know-How that we must all possess to live a happy, healthy and successful life, we must be careful to not get too greedy.
We’ve focused a lot on money and how to make it in recent weeks. It’s important stuff… but not if you’re dead.
When we share the news of this project of ours, some folks have asked us how we can turn from talking about how to trade fast-moving stocks to discussing the ins and outs of the nation’s food system in what seems like the same breath.
They’re confused. How can we be experts at more than one thing… or, holy mackerel, more than two things?
We say that’s the problem.
It’s why most folks can’t invest… and have no idea what they’re eating.
Too many folks focus on getting good at just one thing and fall in line like blind sheep for the rest.
Have You Been Duped?
That’s why a major food manufacturer (that’s kind of a silly term if you ask us) is forced to recall pre-cut melon it sold in some 16 states more than a month ago.
Our nation’s food system has become so industrialized and so factory-based that a single hiccup in one corner of the country gets folks sick all across the nation.
That’s not the way it’s supposed to be.
But when it comes to Know-How, most folks are entirely baffled by what they’re eating.
They’ve been duped and deceived into believing whatever the latest commercial tells them to believe. They’ve been led to trust the nightly news. And they’ve been trained to let the government do their thinking for them.
Take the label on your last meal.
Our first piece of advice is to not eat food that comes with a label (in all our time in the woods and wilderness, we’ve never seen a critter with a bar code)… but we know that’s not reality for most folks.
If that’s the case, at least understand the words – and marketing gimmicks – on the label.
Take the word “organic,” for example.
Most folks think of their organic food coming from some bucolic, family-run farm that’s just down the road. That may have been the case for a day… but it certainly isn’t true now.
Few folks know that General Mills and Kellogg own some of the largest and most popular organic brands.
And most folks have no idea that organic beef can still come from a feed lot or that their organic fruit may still be sprayed with suspicious chemicals.
Crude oil, we often remind folks, is 100% natural and from the earth.
But there’s a kicker to all this that most folks would never guess… According to a recent decision, organic food doesn’t even have to be grown in soil.
That’s right. Build a huge greenhouse, fill it with artificial lights, hoses and trays, and start growing some lettuce. There’s no soil – and all the good that comes with it – in sight.
Just like Ma Nature, right?
Here’s something else we bet you didn’t know.
Let’s say you head to the grocery store and are comparing two chickens.
One costs a few bucks more and has a fancy green label that boasts the bird is “hormone-free.” The other doesn’t.
Which is better?
Ah… it’s a marketing trick.
Despite what so many folks want you to believe, no pork or poultry sold in this country has any added growth hormones. It’s illegal.
The FDA has never approved hormones for anything but sheep and cows raised for beef.
And don’t think because something is labeled “natural” that it’s organic, or vice versa.
Putting the word “natural” on a label is a highly controversial idea according to many watchdog groups. That’s because the USDA has never really defined the term.
It just says it can be used on foods that are minimally processed and don’t have artificial coloring or ingredients added.
How or where the food was raised or grown doesn’t matter.
It’s a similar story with the idea of “cage-free.”
Again, your tax dollars are letting you down.
Although lots of companies claim to raise their critters in a cageless environment, we bet their definition differs from yours… by a lot.
That’s because, once again, the fine folks we rely on for such things have failed to define what cage-free means. And what’s worse, the whole thing works on the honor system. The government doesn’t require inspections or certifications in order for a company to slap the term on their label.
In other words… it’s a joke.
That chicken you invite to dinner tonight may be cage-free, but we bet he never saw the light of day.
Again, most folks don’t know the truth about their food. They head to the grocery store, grab a package of pre-cut watermelon that was harvested a month ago and assume somebody is watching out for them.
But the watchtower is empty. The guards have all gone home.
You’re on your own.
When it comes to something as vital as the food we use to fuel our bodies, we can think of nowhere better to focus our Know-How.
And it’s why we do what we do.
P.S. If you want to expand your Know-How on the subject, we selfishly recommend our new book, Nature’s Miracles. It details many of the inner workings of Big Food… and dives into simple, cheap alternatives. But we say the best part comes right at the beginning, where we delve into an odd – all-natural – spice that shows promise as a cancer buster. It’s probably in your kitchen right now. All the details are at this link. Click here.