(The Daily Sheeple) -- Let’s look at a few of the most popular items that find their way into Easter baskets: jelly beans, chocolate bunnies, mini-eggs, and marshmallow chicks.
This morning, I went to Target just to check out the standard offerings, and here is what I learned.
Back when I ate conventional supermarket stuff, I just looooooved jelly beans. The crunchy outside with the chewy middle, the fruity flavors, the sugar, the bright colors. They just made me happy.
My happiness lessened greatly when I woke up to the things that I was putting into my body. That cheerful looking little bowl of sweetness on my desk looked a lot less appealing.
Here are the ingredients in some standard jelly beans:
Sugar, Corn Syrup, Corn Starch Modified, Caramel Color Natural, Flavor(s) Natural, Flavor(s) Artificial, Color(s) Artificial (Yellow 6, Blue 1, Titanium Dioxide, Red 40, Yellow 5, Red 3) ,Carnauba Wax, Beeswax, Confectioner’s Glaze (Edible Shellac)
So, we have sugar, which is frequently (like 95% of the time) from GMO sugar beets and is horrifically processed. (Learn more about processed sugar). The GMOs don’t stop there – corn syrup and corn starch also make an appearance. (At least 85% of the corn grown in America is GMO – learn more about corn.) Carnauba wax has not been proven toxic by the FDA (snort) but it is also found in shoe polish, automobile wax, and surfboard wax…so if you want to eat “food” that has been shined up like your car or your kitchen floor you should head straight for the jelly beans. Red #40 and Blue #1 are banned in Europe, but hey, they’re apparently all cool here in the US. And Shellac – for that, a picture is worth a thousand words. Shellac is made from the mating secretions of the female lac beetle. That sure gives a whole new meaning to “beetle juice”, doesn’t it?
I like bunnies and chocolate as much as anyone else, and melding the two into a cute piece of delicious candy was simply brilliant from a marketing perspective. The trouble is, standard American chocolate is just garbage. Before we even get into the ingredients in a chocolate bunny, let’s talk for a moment about the chocolate itself.
You know how experts tell you that you should eat some chocolate each day, that it’s actually good for you? Well, they do NOT mean the icky “milk chocolate” sold at every gas station checkout counter in the country. And “white” chocolate? Forget it – that’s not even chocolate.
Here is the nifty thing about the cheapo chocolate sold across the country. It has a secret ingredient – one so secret it isn’t even on the label.
I am not making this stuff up – I couldn’t – they’d sue me.
Those wonderful guardians at the FDA have actually ruled that as long as your chocolate bar contains less than 60 – SIXTY – cockroach parts, it’s perfectly fine to eat. But don’t worry – the average chocolate bar only contains 8 cockroach parts. You can read more of the FDA’s ruling, delightfully entitled Chocolate & Chocolate Liquor – Adulteration with Insect and Rodent Filth.
Anyhow, back to chocolate bunnies. If you still are not deterred by the roach parts, perhaps the other ingredients will slow you down a little.
What I found interesting was that when I compared a cheapo chocolate bunny with it’s more expensive counterpart, a Godiva chocolate bunny, the ingredients had very little difference. Check out the Battle of the Bunnies.