Archive for February, 2010

Unleaded Please

I am in the habit of reading the ingredients of everything I buy in the grocery store. It makes for some long shopping trips, but to me it’s worth the extra time to be sure I’m avoiding all the corn syrups, preservatives, and blue #2s out there. I’ve learned a lot about food and “food” by doing this, but the other day I found something very disturbing and surprising.

I’m a big fan of balsamic vinegar. I make my own salad dressing with it and I douse lots of cooked veggies with it. I think I could just drink it. I don’t mind spending money on good balsamic vinegar, either. With balsamic you get what you pay for. The cheap stuff just doesn’t cut it.

Last week was the first time since we’ve moved to Colorado that I needed to buy a bottle, and the store here carries brands I’m unfamiliar with. So I read the lables. I wasn’t surprised to find that most have preservatives, but what I was shocked to see was that many brands–even the expensive ones–actually have lead in them. And it says so right on the label.

Seriously? Lead? Amazing. I couldn’t help but pity all the other shoppers out there–the ones who don’t read lables–buying this vinegar, completely clueless that they are buying something toxic.

The first thing I did when I got home was look at my almost empty of Iowa balsamic and was releived to find a proud announcement that it does not contain lead.

In the end I bought a cheap bottle of organic balsamic vinegar because it was the only brand that lacked both preservatives and lead.

I wonder what lead tastes like…


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