The Food truth team found a lot of real food at the 2014 Fancy Food Show in NYC alongside some pretty clever impostors.
As savvy foodies, we were not easily sidelined but some products new to market drew us in with slick slogans and persuasive packaging. Here are some of the ones we fell for and why you may want to be cautious when they hit the shelves of your local market. Following the trend back to...
MELT is coconut oil, palm oil, sunflower and canola oil (and other stuff) whipped into a butter substitute. Where have we heard this story before? Oh yeah, margarine. This product is gluten, soy, casein and lactose free but somehow it's also scary. We are so over the idea that butter is bad and somehow not into flavored whipped oils, even if they are certified organic. But decide for yourself: www.meltorganic.com (Note the Coke Zero hiding behind the display). In response to the high consumer demand for HEALTHY SNACKS (we're right there with you) there were some gallant efforts but as far as we could tell, no one took home the gold with this category. We hope they keep trying though it may be possible that "healthy chips" really is an oxymoron. The ones we saw (and sampled, we admit it) still managed to compromise with GM corn as the base ingredient or at least maltodextrin. Yeast flavor (MSG in sheep's clothing) and other dubious ingredients continue to appear in the most virtuous sounding chips. Watch for specific product reviews on our Facebook page: we found more to beware of than to indulge in.
If you are an enlightened Food truth seeker, you know that gluten-free is not synonymous with healthy. This category has exploded in the past few years and since many of us feel better when we avoid gluten but still love baking we are always on the lookout for a miracle mix to stand in for wheat. Leave it to Bob's Red Mill to conveniently package rice flour, potato starch, sorghum flour and tapioca flour with just enough xanthan gum so we can bake a cake without endless measuring. Trusty Bob debuted a new 1:1 Gluten-Free mix which we could not sample at the show but thought it fair to show you along with all of the usual caveats: rice flour is a high glycemic (sugar) food and cakes are not for special occasions... you know the drill.