I believe our food source is tainted.  The FDA allows products and ingredients and practices involving the production of food for mass consumption that most other westernized countries do not.  Red food dye #5 was actually banned some years back by the FDA from use in production of food products.  It was said to cause cancer.  Unfortunately it was re-allowed again some time later as either the data was skewed or the standard was lowered.  My guess is the latter.

Don't get me started on food dyes that are added to foods to improve their aesthetic presentation.  Who cares if it causes allergies, stains our spleens a different color or creates a toxic build up of shit inside of us, at least our food looks more flavorful by being colorized!  I have definite issues with the FDA, farming practices, agricultural bio-engineering and chemicals in general.  It's pretty widely known in my family how I feel about food and food related things.  If it's fake, man-made, filled with ingredients that a normal person can't pronounce, I have no interest in consuming it. 

I would in fact, challenge you to eat as clean as you can for one entire week.  Clean means, no processed food of any kind, no or limited sugar, no artificial sugars, light on the complex carbs, no soda and very limited meat.  If you put single ingredient kinds of food into you it changes the way you feel.  Thus my hatred for our governing body of regulatory food and drugs, the FDA!

During Thanksgiving lunch at my parents, my oldest sister told me she made a pot of vegetable beef soup for supper the night before.  Her two married daughters and husbands and college aged daughter joined her and her husband on Thanksgiving eve for supper.  I love soup, especially homemade anything.  My sister doesn't share my love of cooking or my puritanish ways with food quite to my same degree.

She went on and on about this great soup she had made, smiling while extolling its goodness.  Made, she said, with a homemade can of our mom's beef she found in the back of her cupboard.  The date on the home canned jar of beef said 1999.  Lest you read this in some future year, the year the soup and this blog post was penned was 2012.  That beef, preserved in a mason glass jar by our mother, was 13 years old.  I wanted to crawl out of my skin.

The day after Thanksgiving I cut and pasted information from a website called, "The National Center for Home Food Canning and Preservation" (or something close to that) and texted it to my sister.  According to that site, and others I perused on the shelf life of home canned meats, cans of meat should only be kept for a maximum of 1 year or up to 3 years if the cans are kept in a cool dark environment.  Her can exceeded all maximums by 10 years.  I could feel maggots crawling on my insides just thinking about it.  She did appreciate my humorous, informative and somewhat sarcastic chastising texts quoting directly from the "National Center For Home Food Canning and Preservation".  Their slogan was; We have a BALL canning. (Though they are a real organization, I fictitiously created this slogan and claim all ownership to its marketability and revenue streams!)

It didn't move her like it did me or even seem to faze her (she gets that from our mom who will can anything that will fit in a jar).  She claims that it smelled fine, the lid was still sealed and it was extremely tender.  Based on those three quantifiers only, she used it in the pot of soup she fed to her entire family the night before Thanksgiving.  I feel that instead of bragging about using that 13 year old canned beef, she should have been giving thanks that no one got food poisoning.  She should have been thankful that she didn't create a Thanksgiving Day trip to the hospital for all those that consumed it.  Though she would have made a stellar pioneer woman or a contestant on the show "Fear Factor".

Her rationale to using it was that it seemed fine along with the fact that she didn't want to run to the grocery store to purchase a new and same decade dated can of beef.  With that kind of canned beef roulette I declared to her that I would never eat at her house again.  I would though take her to Vegas to bet some mullah on the slots.  Beating botulism odds on a 13 year old can of home-made canned beef is most definitely Vegas gambling worthy. 

Am I the only one with a food standard in my family?

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