Inspections Reveal that Imported Foods often Mislabelled
|September 16, 2011||Posted by Alex under Lifestyle|
If you ever needed another reason to go local, here’s one: according to inspections, most imported foods show inaccurate nutritional info and contents.
According to sources, newly released report reveals that the majority of imported foods that have been examined by government inspectors over the past three years contain incorrect nutrional information, misleading health claims and even fail to list the correct ingredients.
The worst culprits so far seem to be foods failling to adequately meet quality standards. In 2008-9 there was a 75 percent non-compliance rate with the category, which rose to 84 percent the following year. That means that only 15-25 percent of imported foods met the Canadian standard for quality. Yikes!
Reasons that a product may fail the compliance test rance from phony nutrional claims on the packaging, bogus health claims, inaccurate nutritional facts, absence or presence of a prohibited ingredient and, for meats, failure to make the declared grade.
Some examples of foods that failed this test include grain products like rye bread that contain no rye, mislabelled meat products such as a wing steak being called a T-bone, and products that say “preservative free” but in fact contain preservatives.
This is kind of scary, especially considering that some foods fail to correctly list their ingredients. People have the right to know what they are consuming, especially people who suffer from food allergies. Failing to do so is not only lazy and inconsiderate, it is also dangerous.
I’ve talked a few times about the benefits of going local, and I think this is one of the most convincing reasons why we should try to change our grocery spending habits. Foods packaged and made in Canada follow strict rules and are not concerned about making the cheapest food possible. When food is imported from other countries it is often because of low standards of labour laws over there, and for the companies that do so, food is just a way to make money.
Here at 21st Century Food we do our best to buy locally and to know what goes in each and every one of our meals. This fall, thanks to our nutritionist, our nutritional content and ingredient information will be up on our website.
If you are new to the local food concept, I’d recommend heading down to your local farmer’s market, and see what people who care about food are like. You will like what you find.