Thursday, July 14, 2011
It’s time for the Queen of Green to burst another flavor bubble. Think about the creamy vanilla ice cream that you love to indulge in because it melts in your mouth and is bursting with pure vanilla flavor. Think again. Did you know there are many ice cream brands that are not bursting with pure vanilla flavor? Some brands contain a hidden ingredient that is made of Beaver Anal Glands!
No, that was not a typo.
Yes, I just said ‘Beaver Anal Glands!’
I don’t know about you, but the thought of shoveling Beaver Anal Glands into my mouth is making my stomach churn.
Beaver Anal Glands are often hidden in ingredient lists as castoreum or natural flavors. They are used to enhance the flavor of vanilla and raspberry drinks, ice cream, candies, puddings, and other desserts. But rest assure, the FDA approves this ingredient as a food additive and has classified it as “generally recognized as safe.” “Generally” recognized as safe—those words do not sound very promising. After all, we are consuming an animal’s private body part that was certainly not intended to excite our taste buds!
According to Gentleworld.org,”castoreum is a bitter, orange-brown, odoriferous, oily secretion, found in two sacs between the anus and the external genitals of beavers. The discharge of the castor sac is combined with the beaver’s urine, and used during scent marking of territory. Both male and female beavers possess a pair of castor sacs and a pair of anal glands located in two cavities under the skin between the pelvis and the base of the tail.”
You will also be shocked to know that Beaver Anal Glands are also a common ingredient in perfume and cologne. Think about that the next time you reach for that cute little bottle of fragrance. After all, don’t you want to spray the refreshing scent of Beaver Anal Gland all over yourself?
My biggest question is who is the inventor or shall I say mad scientist that came up with the idea of thinking that Beaver Anal Glands would be a good flavor enhancer? Sounds like a pretty twisted individual if you ask me!
The next time you are at the grocery store, read those ingredient labels. If you see the words castoreum or natural flavors put it back on the shelf or call the company directly to see what the “natural flavors” are made of! Look for ice cream that is flavored with real vanilla beans. Also, avoid purchasing cosmetics made with animal ingredients.
The words “natural and artificial flavors added” caught my attention while glancing at the container of Blue Bell’s Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream. It is making me wonder the source of these so called natural and artificial flavors! Maybe their new jingle should sound something like this:
Blue Bell the best Beaver Anal Glands in the country!!
In conclusion, I am just horrified at what is being added to our food. We should not have to scout every ingredient label or worry about what toxic chemicals are being put on our food, or worry what type of ramification it may have on our children’s delicate system. Our food system needs change and hopefully this is the first step to spreading awareness.