Farm Press Blog

Why isn't the record corrected with the same passion?

  • Food products once blamed for poor health are now healthy again. Go figure!


What are discerning consumers supposed to believe about our food supply? When information quietly comes out touting the benefits of certain foods that were once blamed for more evil than a room full of dictators could dream up over their high-fat lunch, how are we to respond?

For years now the popular press has presented stories about healthy oils such as olive oil – no, not Popeye’s girlfriend – and the unhealthy benefits of other oils we use in cooking. Now it seems that olive oil is not the only healthy oil out there, and the one so demonized that it was pulled from our movie popcorn is now… wait for it… healthy.

Some might recall the outrage and fear raised when a poorly-named group screamed bloody murder about the coconut oil found in movie theater popcorn. As an aside, groups that claim to be operating in the “public interest” and have that in their name – including the Center for Science in the Public Interest – should immediately be suspect as neither espousing legitimate science nor the public’s interest.

Now coconut oil is healthy once again. So too are oils derived from avocado, canola, the aforementioned olive, and a Peruvian seeded pod called “Sacha Inchi Oil.” So when does the drive to replace the oil in our $20 tub of movie popcorn with the tastier coconut oil begin? Oh, and can I have real butter on my popcorn?

We also know – or at least highly suspect – that natural sugars are far healthier than the artificial sweeteners that came with a similar craze years ago about how dangerous sugar was to our diets. But the push to correct the record never seems to be as vigorous as the one that sullied the positive benefits of our natural ingredients.

While I like when stories come out debunking earlier fear mongering over certain natural food products such as sugar and various oils, it is more than a bit troubling that they never come with the fanfare that first ushered them off our plates and out of our food.


Follow me on Twitter @ToddFitchette

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