If you have been following the press lately, there appears to be a lot of deception regarding our food supply. In California, officials discovered that over 50% of the fish being sold in stores and restaurants is mislabeled, so there is a good chance that the sea bass you think you are eating is actually Vietnamese toothy catfish or some other less desirable cut of ocean monster.
But perhaps inadvertently consuming an inferior grade of fish is not as bad as some of the alternatives. As reported on This American Life a few weeks ago, food producers are potentially labeling hog bung as “artificial calamari”. Well, I guess it is the right shape. It’s one thing to have some unscrupulous restaurant serve me farm raised instead of wild salmon – but I draw the line at having pig ass fried up and sold as seafood.
I know little about animal processing, but I was surprised to learn that we are so efficient that we even utilize animal rectums for our food supply. I would never knowingly buy hog bung, cow lips, or pig blood, but I do buy sausage and hot dogs, so there is a good chance I am eating all those things.
But perhaps this all just naturally fits into our new world where “things are not as they appear”. In today’s society it would not be unusual to meet someone online – who claims to be a doctor – but actually works detailing doctor’s cars. You then might go out on a date to a restaurant that looks like a charming neighborhood joint, but is actually owned by a massive multi-national corporation that uses the profits to undermine South American governments. The wine they serve you, represented as 2008 Oregon Pinot, might actually be Two Buck Chuck Merlot purchased from a bankrupt Argentinian winery. But in any case, avoid ordering the calamari.