Friday Fact: Natural Flavors

Yesterday morning. Barefoot in the kitchen. Unbrushed hair.


Options: H2O. On tap.

Options unacceptable. Tap water first thing in the morning tastes like licking a rock.

Stepper: I want juice.
Wyatt: Can I have milk?
Bill: (considering) Juice. yeah.
Wyatt: Can I have milk, mom?
Stepper/Bill: There's no milk, bud.
Stepper: See? There's no milk in the fridge. It's all gone.
Bill: We'll have to go to the store today to get some.
Wyatt: Yeah! And I can drink it!
Stepper: You want water or juice?
Wyatt: I want water.
Stepper: Okay (weirdo).

Pantry. Bottled apple juice. Delicious when cold. But room temperature?

This option would have to involve ice. and waiting.

I like my ice to be a delicacy. Not a necessity.

And low blood sugar for too long in the AM = sudden attack of Evil Stepper.

Bill: Look, there's this juice (pulling concentrate can from freezer)
Stepper: (staring forlornly at the already-mixed-to-perfection-all-you-gotta-do-is-pour room temperature juice on the shelf) what kind is that?
Bill: Orange Mango Pineapple!
Stepper: (before Bill's words register) That kind is crap!
Bill: What?! It's got oranges! And pineapple!
Stepper: YOU eat it, then.

Not-evil Stepper recognizes Evil Stepper seconds before Evil Stepper takes control.

Stepper: Well, that might be okay.
Bill: Yeah! It's 100% juice!
Stepper: That doesn't mean it's healthy!
Bill: (confused) Yes it does. Look. 100% juice.
Stepper: It's still full of sugar.
Bill: No - it's got orange juice concentrate, mango juice concentrate, and pineapple juice concentrate and other natural flavors.
Stepper: SUGAR!

Evil Stepper, knock it off!

Stepper: Mm, concentrate! Mix 'er up!
Wyatt: Can I have milk, dad?
Bill (turning hot tap water onto frozen can) No, buddy, remember? The milk is all gone. You want juice?
Wyatt: (disappointed)
Stepper: (takes the can from the hot tap water and dumps it into pitcher. Starts to add water) You know, juice still gives me a headache. That's how come I know it's full of sugar. Fruit is full of sugar!
Bill: ...
Stepper: I wonder what 'natural flavors' means? I mean...why do they have to add that as an ingredient? If it's just the natural flavor that occurs from the ingredients? Or is it something they actually add? 'natural flavors.' But why would you have to add flavor to 100% juice?"
Bill: Hah! That is a really good question.
Stepper: I need to Friday Fact that.
Bill: Yeah...Natural Flavors. They're probably not natural at all.

Research ensues.

(It should be known that Stepper trusts the FDA exactly nothing. She's not even sure they really exist. They're just an incorporeal entity that hovers over Farmer's heads so that Business Men get their way.)

(But then, Evil Stepper is pretty cynical.)

The Exact Definition of Natural Flavoring/flavors:
(from Title 21, Section 101, part 22 of the Code of Federal Regulations)

The term natural flavor or natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meant, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.

In other words, "natural flavors" can mean pretty much anything derived from anything edible.

I wonder if I was drinking the essense of my fruit juice?

(yes, we did go to the store and get poor Wyatt some milk)


William C. McCrery said...

"natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis,"

That about does it for my faith in mankind. Goodnight.

Jones said...

yeah real vegetarians or vegans shouldnt eat things with 'natural flavors' because even non-meat products could have some natrual flavoring that was derived from meat, your juice might have blood in it.

Tamsin said...

I would just like to declare that Wyatt hereby has carte blanche, unlimited access to the milk in our refrigerator. Because I know the thirst that can only be quenched by that white elixir of heaven. We share a common bond through our love of milk. I'm looking out for you, Wy!