We have shouted a warning earlier about how WHOLE FOODS has captured our organic market----literally pushing local organic markets out of business as MONOPOLIES ALWAYS DO. We are concerned about the goals a WholeFoods may have in undermining ORGANICS AND FAIR TRADE rather than being a leader in this. First, locating its headquarters in TEXAS where it was founded----TEXAS is of course ground zero for NO REGULATIONS OR OVERSIGHT----and it is definitely pro all that is NOT ORGANIC.
I have been a faithful shopper at WholeFoods for decades so I am not being a very good small organic farm activist but I am moving more and more that way. What I am seeing at WholeFoods here in Baltimore is a narrower and more narrow choice of brands moving mostly to its private 365 BRAND. As this pro-WholeFoods article states WholeFoods is about to create satellite food stores just for this 365 brand. Yes, 365 is the most affordable more so than what I buy at a SAFEWAY OR GIANT---which makes me think something is NOT KOSHER. KOSHER BEING A DIFFERENT ISSUE ALSO BEING CORRUPTED.
Another thing I am noticing at WholeFoods is much of the ingredients I have found very easily are now often not on the shelf when I shop. Whether their supply lines are down or ordering is lax----I am not getting the great service or feeling of food quality I have years in the past. Organic fruits and vegetables found with frozen centers that rot very fast -------very common these days. If one does not use that vegetable the first few days of buying----it will not be fresh very long meaning----these are not of the same quality we used to have from a WHOLEFOODS. I wonder if WholeFoods being that global market is selling what was its quality foods overseas getting a higher price while here in US we are getting lower and lower quality foods same as our national grocery chain stores.
Oct 26, 2015 | 5:55 pm
Whole Foods’ private label is hugely popular, but there are some things you may not know about it
Does "Organic" Matter?Does whether or not a product is organic really matter? New Yorkers weigh in.
Coming Up Next
Whole Foods is one of the best-known food stores in America, and has been nothing short of revolutionary in its approach to healthy and organic foods. Its private label line, 365 Everyday Value, is one of the keys to its success, but we bet that there’s a lot you don’t know about this line of hundreds of products.
10 Things You Didn't Know About Whole Foods 365 Products (Slideshow)
Whole Foods got its start in 1978, when founders John Mackey and Renee Lawson borrowed $45,000 to open a natural foods store in Austin. The next several decades are a story of rapid expansion and increasing cultural influence. Whether Whole Foods inspired the current movement toward eating healthier and less processed foods or is simply piggybacking on it is up for debate, but you can’t deny that the company plays a major role in the current conversation about what we put into our bodies.
Whole Foods was the first nationally certified organic grocer in the country; all their meat is antibiotic- and hormone-free, and animal welfare is a top priority. While the company certainly sells plenty of non-365 brand packaged goods, the hundreds of 365 products in every store are impossible to miss. Along with being reasonably priced, all 365 products are either certified organic or enrolled in the Non-GMO Project, and align with its list of “unacceptable ingredients” that will never appear on its shelves, which means that they’re also free of artificial flavorings, colorings, sweeteners, preservatives, and hydrogenated fats.
The 365 brand has become so trusted and popular that Whole Foods is actually co-opting the name for its new store concept, 365 by Whole Foods Market, a forthcoming “smaller-store format” with “modern, consistent design,… innovative technology, and… just the right product mix to ensure an efficient and rewarding shopping experience.” Even though Whole Foods has always prided itself on the transparency behind 365 (it’s more forthcoming about its private label than just about any other store), there’s still plenty to learn about it. Read on for 10 facts about Whole Foods’ 365 Everyday Value.
This is what we are seeing all around-----all great food labelling ---all great organic and hormone/anti-biotics/free range tied to a pricing scale all while investigations, data, research into product lines called fair trade are showing this food system is compromised. We are seeing this in all industries----more categories of supposed quality while not receiving this quality. One thing concerning to me-----their chicken is coming packaged in a way that looks very Asian. They are getting their seafood from Asia. This would explain the lower and lower prices at a food store claiming more and more quality.
'For others, Whole Foods is a symbol of capitalism‘s ills, a cornerstone of the “Industrialized Organic” complex that is contributing to the death of the small farmer'.
Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value: The Good, The Bad, and The Questionable
by 3p Contributor on Friday, May 25th, 2012
Originally Posted on EcoSalon
By Jessica Marati
For some, Whole Foods is a god-send – a convenient, well-stocked supermarket filled with a trustworthy, if somewhat overpriced, mix of natural and organic foods. For others, Whole Foods is a symbol of capitalism‘s ills, a cornerstone of the “Industrialized Organic” complex that is contributing to the death of the small farmer.
Most people I know lie somewhere in the middle: they can’t deny the appeal of a one-stop-shop for their healthy yuppie lifestyles, but they’re skeptical of how conscience-friendly a company can be once it’s grown into a publicly traded corporation. In this week’s Behind the Label, we take a look at the good and the bad of Whole Foods, with a particular focus on its in-house 365 Everyday Value® brand.
If you’re a natural foodie on a budget, you’re probably familiar with 365 Everyday Value, which encompasses a range of products from butter to body wash to balsamic vinegar. 365 products tend to be basic in nature and cheaper than their shelf-mates. But how trust-worthy are they?
Whole Foods had a humble start as a small natural foods store in Austin, Texas, started by 25-year-old college drop-out (and current CEO) John Mackey, his then-girlfriend Rene Lawson, and a staff of 19. Today, Whole Foods is a publicly-traded company with more than 310 stores in the U.S. and United Kingdom and plans for aggressive expansion in secondary markets over the next decade.
In addition to stocking a wide variety of organic, natural, and locally-sourced foods, Whole Foods also offers a number of generic products under its 365 Everyday Value® brand, which claims to “fill your pantry without emptying your pocketbook.” All 365 products are either certified organic or enrolled in the Non-GMO Project, which verifies that genetically modified organisms are not present in the product. As mentioned in the recent article Behind the Label on Kashi, verification from the Non-GMO Project can be difficult given the preponderance of genetically engineered crops in America, so Whole Foods’ commitment to this issue is worth noting.
Whole Foods has also been a heavy proponent of GMO labeling, a popular topic in the natural foods community.
Our goal at Whole Foods Market is to provide informed consumer choice with regard to genetically engineered ingredients (also known as GMOs or Genetically Modified Organisms). Clearly labeled products enable shoppers who want to avoid foods made with GMOs to do so.
In addition to its stance on GMO transparency, Whole Foods’ quality standards have been recognized as being among the top in the industry, and the company maintains a list of “unacceptable ingredients,” which it says will never appear on its shelves.
The 365 Everyday Value® brand’s reputation hasn’t always been so squeaky clean. In 2008, a television report from WJLA in Washington, DC, questioned if consumers can trust Whole Foods 365 organic products if the label says that they are made in China. Standards are more lax in China, and the distance these products travels lessens the environmental benefit of choosing organic.
In a detailed rebuttal to WJLA, Whole Foods’ Organic Certification Coordinator Joe Dickson said that products from China can absolutely be certified organic. In the rebuttal, Dickson points out that USDA organic certification measures food integrity regardless of where in the world crops are grown.
Whole Foods Market is a pioneer in promoting and selling natural and organic foods and we have done more in our history as a company to promote and build organics than any other retailer … This is not “selling an image;” this is actually making sure that every one of our 275 stores is operating in compliance with the National Organic Standards and upholding organic integrity in everything they do.
Whole Foods’ assurances have done little to appease foods activists like the Organic Consumers Association, which picketed a Chicago Whole Foods in 2011 for selling genetically modified brands like Tofutti, Kashi, and Boca Burgers.
Whole Foods has taken major strides toward offering organic and GMO-free products at reasonable prices, particularly with its 365 Everyday Value® line. But naturally, the company’s growth and success have earned it many critics, including author and food activist Michael Pollan, who associated Whole Foods with what he calls “Industrialized Organic” in his popular book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma. Whole Foods CEO John Mackey responded to Pollan’s claims in an open letter:
I am not sure if merely because of our size and success Whole Foods Market deserves the pejorative label “Big Organic” or “Industrial Organic,” or even to be linked to those categories. I would argue instead that organic agriculture owes much of its growth and success over the past 20 years to Whole Foods Market’s successful growth and commitment to organic. As an organization we continually challenge ourselves to be responsible and ethical tenants of the planet. Through our stores, large and small organic farmers, both local and international, can offer their products to an increasingly educated population that is more interested in organics every day.
Pollan, who professes much respect for Mackey and Whole Foods, responded:
After visiting a great many large organic farms to research my book, many of them your suppliers, it seems to me undeniable that organic agriculture has industrialized over the past few years, and that Whole Foods has played a part in that process–for good and for ill … And as I tried to make clear in my account of the organic industry, much is gained when organic gets big … But surely we can recognize all these important gains without turning a blind eye to the costs: the sacrifice of small farmers and of some of the founding principles of organic farming (its commitment to polyculture, for example; to “whole” rather than highly processed foods; to social and economic sustainability, etc.)
It all seems to trace back to the big corporation/small business dilemma: do you buy your organic kale and locally-harvested honey at the strip mall supermarket, or do you support your local farmers and neighborhood natural foods store? If price wasn’t an inhibitor, I’m sure most conscious consumers would go with the second option.
But even on Whole Foods’ shelves that conundrum exists. Buy the locally-sourced salad dressing for $13.99, or the generic 365 version for $3.99? The up-and-coming fair trade brand body lotion for $15, or the 365 cream for $5?
While I appreciate the lower-priced options, I can’t help but notice a disconnect. If Whole Foods wants to truly support local farmers and small businesses, the company should stop undercutting their offerings with its lower-priced, mass-produced, 365-branded items.
Food prices soared these several years as inflation soared with it----of course not the US FED it manipulated inflation as these few decades pretending it was still near zero. Why did some food prices drop this year? IT'S ELECTION YEAR FOLKS---IT ALWAYS DROPS. Here we see the price of pork is lower----what occurred a few years ago? China bought SMITHFIELD and as global Wall Street pols PRETEND that did not mean our pork would be processed in China---it actually is.
This coming economic crash with the US FED raising interest rates will see inflation soar even more----now that this 'ELECTION' is over.
Know what gets places my holiday cheer on hold? Global grocery chains forcing us into self-check-out lines. We are paying higher prices, bagging and checking our own groceries, while our grocer employees are seeing wages go down and down and down. I stand in long lines every time I go into a local SAFEWAY----
Here we are told consumer confidence is up because food prices have temporarily been lowered for election year.
Thursday, Sep 8, 2016 05:59 AM EDT
Cheap trick: Falling food prices are boosting consumer confidence — and the economy
Food prices keep on dropping, which is giving Americans extra cash to spend — unless you’re a vegan Angelo Young
The price of bananas is displayed on a digital price tag at a 365 by Whole Foods Market grocery store ahead of its opening day in Los Angeles, U.S., May 24, 2016. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/File Photo - RTX2KM4W(Credit: Reuters)Leah Waters, a married mother of two boys, said she’s noticed a significant drop in some key items at Aldi, the German global discount supermarket chain she frequents in Oklahoma City. The store’s sales flyer this week touted eggs at 69 cents a dozen and chicken thighs at 69 cents a pound. A gallon of milk at the local Braum’s ice cream and burger outlet is about $2.50, some 50 cents less than a year ago.
“Eggs and milk, for sure,” Waters told Salon when asked about noticeable drops in food prices. But, she added, “canned goods and fresh produce are as expensive as ever.”
American household-budget planners like Waters are reaping a bounty these days as the United States is on track for its longest streak of falling food prices since the 1960s. While a relentless drought in California has driven up the prices of many varieties of fruits and vegetables, these costs are more than offset by steep declines in staple perishables.
Just look at the latest official data: Compared with last year, the average American city shopper is paying 2 percent less for pork chops, 5 percent less for boneless chicken breasts and 12 percent less for ground beef. A similar pattern is playing out with milk, cheese and white bread. Eggs prices are down the most, about 40 percent, to a nationwide average of $1.54 a dozen.
Couple those declines with an average 20 percent year-over-year drop in gasoline prices in July, and the daily pocketbook expenses of a typical U.S. household have declined significantly, freeing up cash to make other purchases in the economy. Presidential elections are so often determined by how comfortable the typical household feels about its economic conditions, and right now, consumers are more confident than they’ve been in nearly a year with just two months before they go to the polls. One reason is that they can stock their fridges without feeling the pinch.
While this drop in prices in the United States has been great for consumers — especially carnivores — it’s been hard on the U.S. farm belt, which just three years ago saw farmers and ranchers digging out from one of the worst droughts in recorded American history. Back then the weather drove up the cost of livestock feed used in the meat and dairy industries, sending prices skyward at the grocery store.
Today the opposite is happening as global demand for U.S. crops has withered. Recessions in Russia and Brazil and a slowdown in demand from China, the world’s second-largest economy, have knocked down the value of U.S. agricultural exports. The global slowdown has driven up the value of the mighty U.S. dollar relative to other major world currencies, raising the prices of U.S. exports, driving demand down further. This means U.S. grain silos are packed, lowering feed prices and encouraging overproduction. Meanwhile, low energy prices are making it cheaper to move refrigerated food around the country.
“If you’re a farmer it’s bad,” Gus Faucher, deputy chief economist at PNC Bank in Pittsburgh, told Salon. “Lower food prices is certainly beneficial to the economy overall but there are pockets that are getting hit.”
Indeed, many dairy farmers are either dumping milk into manure pits or considering doing so. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently bought $20 million worth of cheese and $12 million worth of eggs and egg products for nutritional assistance programs in an effort to support farmers through the current gluts. And ranchers, who stocked up on cattle to take advantage of a post-drought rebound in 2014, are now set for a record year of beef production, which is lowering their profit margins. (Again, not everything is cheaper. Fruit and vegetable prices have risen 1.4 percent compared with last year and those for processed foods remain relatively unchanged since the raw ingredients used to make them are only a portion of the production costs.)
But Faucher said despite the harm to U.S. farmers and ranchers, the net effect of lower food prices benefits the economy — so long as core inflation, a measure of the cost of goods and services excluding gasoline and food prices, continues to rise. While low prices are welcomed by consumers, falling prices across an economy is a sign of trouble because it indicates that people, businesses and governments aren’t spending less money and this is a common symptom of economic recessions. Currently core inflation is lower than where the U.S. Federal Reserve believes it should be — a paltry annualized rate of 1.6 percent in July.
“If food prices are falling and other prices are falling, then it’s bad,” Faucher said. “If food prices are falling but other prices are rising, then there’s no risk of deflation.”
Analysts expect low prices for meat and dairy products to continue to lower grocery stores bills at least until the end of the year, which means the holiday season will be easier on household budgets. Unless, of course, you’re a vegan.
I went to WholeFoods on one holiday trip to buy duck----thinking of all those HUNTERS sitting in duck blinds in the fall as peak season for plenty of duck-----$15-20 a single duck breast. WOW----FORGET THIS RECIPE. So, I went for a substitute SCALLOPS----now I have to worry about the fact that scallops are one seafood most often found to NOT BE SCALLOPS---but shark or another white fish. FISH FRAUD RUNNING RAMPANT IN US CITIES DEEMED FOREIGN ECONOMIC ZONES.
For all those duck hunters here on our Eastern Shore---know how much money you could get from those hours sitting in duck blinds.
Holiday Dinners: Duck breast with crème fraîche and roasted grapes
by CHEF FRANK TERRANOVA, JOHNSON & WALES UNIVERSITY
Wednesday, December 14th 2016
Holiday Dinners: Duck breast with crème fraîche and roasted grapes
Yield: 6 servings
6 6-ounce duck breasts
1 tablespoon dried juniper berries, crushed in re-sealable plastic bag using flat side of mallet
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 pound purple seedless grapes, cut into small clusters
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
Coarse Kosher salt and ground pepper, to taste
3 cups arugula
1/4 cup crème fraîche or sour cream, stirred to loosen
Method of Preparation:
1. Using sharp knife, score skin of duck breast diagonally to create 3/4-inch-wide diamond pattern. Sprinkle crushed juniper berries and thyme over both sides of breast; press to adhere. Place on rimmed baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 4 hours. (Can be prepared one day ahead. Keep refrigerated.)
2. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
3. Arrange grape clusters in single layer on baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper. Roast until skins are slightly crisp but grapes are still soft and juicy inside, about 14 minutes. Cool. (Can be made four hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)
4. Sprinkle both sides of duck breasts with salt and pepper. Heat heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add duck, skin side down; cook until almost all fat is rendered, about seven minutes. Increase heat to medium-high and cook until skin is brown and crisp, about four minutes. Turn duck over and cook about three minutes longer for medium-rare. Let duck rest five minutes.
5. Divide arugula among six plates. Thinly slice duck breasts crosswise and fan out slightly; place one breast atop arugula on each plate. Drizzle crème fraîche over each breast. Divide grapes among plates.
I am looking at all those beautiful vinegars----oils-----and thinking are they really the quality they say? HO, HO, HO-----WE KNOW WHO'S BEING NAUGHTY----LET'S BE NICE.
My family are generations-old Chesapeake water men so I know a thing or two about fresh, local seafood being the real thing and it too often is not. Maryland sells more blue crab from Asia to its citizens and ships our Chesapeake Bay blue crab overseas for higher prices.
'Don’t buy products labeled “light” or “extra light” olive oil. They may be made with olive oil pulp treated with chemicals, and they may contain carcinogens'.
Food Fraud: Are you paying for scallops and getting shark meat?
By Ethel Tiersky
Jan 12, 2011
Does what’s in the package match what’s on the package? Not always. How often are consumers deceived and cheated by food manufacturers? Estimates say that 5-10% of the products on sale contain fraudulent claims. Now the food industry is urging federal regulators to do more to combat this deception. The FDA, the agency with the major responsibility for making sure that foods are labeled correctly, has been preoccupied with food contamination and unable to give food fraud the attention it needs.
Food fraud sneaks into our products in all these ways :
1) A cheaper ingredient is substituted for a more expensive one that that the label claims is being used. 2) A known food allergen is in the product, but the packaging doesn’t list it. (This deception or error can be deadly for allergic consumers.) 3) The product packaging makes untrue claims about the nutritional values or health benefits of the product. This occurs with foods and also with vitamins and supplements, especially with so-called diet pills, memory boosters, energy boosters, and sexual performance enhancers.
Here are some examples of food scams that have been uncovered:
• Expensive “sheep’s milk cheese”? Not really. It was made with cow’s milk, a food allergen that could make some consumers seriously ill.
• “Sturgeon caviar?” Nope. It was Mississippi paddlefish. But the consumer who pays top dollar for an exotic luxury item should get exactly that.
• “Scallops?” Maybe not. Cookie cutters have been used to turn shark meat or skate into scallop look-alikes.
• “Wild” salmon? Most of what’s sold as “wild” salmon is actually farm-raised.
• “Olive oil?” Often, it was wholly or mostly another oil that was cheaper to produce. This scam deprived misled consumers of the heart health benefits and taste they seek by cooking with real olive oil. (Read more about the international olive oil scam by clicking on the New Yorker link listed below.)
• “100% pure honey”? The price was high enough for top quality, but the product was diluted with sugar beets or corn syrup.
• “Pure maple syrup?” Not exactly. It was diluted with water and sugar.
• What could be in coffee? Dishonest manufacturers have used corn, sugar, soy, and even wood to cut costs and bulk up the product. The Brazilian Coffee Industry Association is cracking down on these cheaters. Since most Brazilian coffee is exported as beans, the impure ground coffee is primarily a Brazilian problem. Though not causing serious illness, the tainted brew does cause upset stomachs and burping.
Misleading illustrations and packaging blurbs often imply that a food is something other than what it really is. NutritionAction provides the following examples and more: Smucker’s Simply Fruit contains more fruit syrup than fruit, and the syrup doesn’t even come from the fruit pictured on the label but from some cheaper fruit. According to the box of Kellogg’s Eggo Nutri-Grain Pancakes, the product is “made with Whole Wheat and Whole Grain.” Yes, but they’re primarily made of white flour. Dannon’s DanActive claims to “strengthen your body’s defenses,” but the company’s own study did not prove that to be true.
Government agencies regularly post online notices of recalls due to the presence of undisclosed allergens.
Two recalls that ShelfLifeAdvice noticed recently were 1) Glutino Raisin Bread, which contained undeclared egg. (Consumers who have an allergy or sensitivity to eggs run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reactions.) and 2) Zatarain’s Original Dirty Rice Mix, which contained unlisted wheat and barley ingredients. People who are allergic or sensitive to various ingredients—perhaps peanuts, eggs, milk corn, or specific additives or preservatives—depend upon accurate, complete listings of ingredients, and they suffer if listings are incomplete or outright lies.
Food fraud is nothing new. It has been on the scene since Roman times.
British food writer Bee Wilson has published a history of food rip-offs entitled Swindled: The Dark History of Food Fraud, from Poisoned Candy to Counterfeit Coffee. According to James Morehouse, who is studying food scams for the Grocery Manufacturers Association, “It is growing very rapidly, and there’s more of it than you think.” An increase in imported foods may be one reason for the growing problem.
It is almost impossible for the individual consumer to detect these scams. But the food industry and the government can fight back. New high-tech tools (such as DNA testing) have made it easier to recognize fraud. DNA can be extracted from a wide range of foods (including fish, meat, rice, and coffee) and then compared to the DNA of a database of samples. Isotope ratio analysis can detect where products came from, for example, whether a fish was farmed or caught in the wild or whether caviar is imported or American-made.
The new technology is so easy to use that some New York City high school students, working with scientists, tested 66 foods sold in Manhattan and found 11 that were mislabeled. Large companies, in an effort to protect their brands, are also using the DNA testing.
So what can you do to protect yourself from food scams? Not a whole lot, but here are a few suggestions.
• Buy from reputable stores that you trust.
• When possible, purchase major American brands.
• Read the list of ingredients carefully. That can keep you from being misled by the implications of illustrations or slogans on packaging. The major ingredients of a food are listed ahead of the others, so you can identify the main ingredients, and the facts may surprise you.
• Sugar by any other name is still sugar. If the ingredient name ends in –ose it’s probably sugar, though it may be called high fructose corn syrup, dextrose, or sucrose in an attempt to hide the fact that the product is loaded with sugar.
• Be especially careful when purchasing olive oil. In 1997-8, it was the most adulterated product in the European Union. Here are some tips on what to look for to get authentic, good-quality olive oil:
√ Don’t buy products labeled “light” or “extra light” olive oil. They may be made with olive oil pulp treated with chemicals, and they may contain carcinogens.
√ Look for these trustworthy certifications on labels of imported oils: IOOC, DOP, DO, or HAEPAO. Look for COOC on labels of California oils. The COOC website recommends specific brands, most of which are sold only on the Internet.
√ If it’s inexpensive, it’s unlikely to be real extra-virgin olive oil. That sells for at least $12 for a 500 ml. bottle and, for top quality, the price can be much higher.
Food scams go on all over the world—and, in many countries, to a greater degree than in the U.S. But that’s small comfort to consumers who have been cheated and/or sickened by deceptive labeling.
FARM TO TABLE------a WholeFoods is saying this as are more and more and more of our restaurants claiming to be ARTISAN------WHEN THEY ARE NOT. So, WE THE PEOPLE cannot even go out to dinner wanting a quality meal feeling secure we are getting for what we are paying. Higher and higher prices for lower and lower quality. Talking about patent protections----as this chef says REAL Artisan food regions are being fleeced as are we.
Watch to where you take the family for that farm to table fresh holiday meal------this is US cities as Foreign Economic Zones meaning our economy is filled with fraud and corruption.
This is a great video----this chef is sick and tired of our restaurants and specialty food all being FAKES.
Food Fraud at Uncle Jack's Steakhouse | Best Steakhouse in New York | New York Steakhouse
Published on Sep 26, 2013Here is perfect example of food fraud, or gross misinterpretation of where their beef comes from.
We personally don't know Willie and the people at Jack's Steakhouse. We are sure they are nice people with good intentions.
But we were not satisfied with the menu verbage and the staff's answers about the beef.
Again this is just our review and critic of Jack's.
We hope that they see this video as an opportunity to train staff better or be clearer about their food sourcing description.
We are happy to provide education to Jack's or any restaurant that wishes so.
Food mislabeling happens all the time from stores to restaurants. As a professional chef myself I am fed up with these thieves, liars and crooks that are ripping off consumers. So I'm speaking out against chefs, restaurants and companies that are misleading you. Always ask questions about your food. It's your right to know what you are eating. It's actually against the law for these crooks to scam you.
Caroling has gone the way of Halloween door to door----it is too dangerous-----people don't want others coming to their doors----or maybe it's just that everyone is not Christian celebrating Christmas. Wassailing and caroling began as simply a community of people wanting to bring cheer during this season of festivals and it included families having food and drinks to share with those walking and singing. THIS WAS THE 99% COMING TOGETHER AS ONE. Please consider tolerance whether of whom comes to the door or what religious faith----each religion has its own customs like this and we could learn so much by OPENING THAT DOOR!
SIMPLE FOODS OR DRINKS---SIMPLE GIFTS ------full of community!
Mumming is also an ancient pagan custom that was an excuse for people to have a party at Christmas! It means 'making diversion in disguise'. The tradition was that men and women would swap clothes, put on masks and go visiting their neighbors, singing, dancing or putting on a play with a silly plot. The leader or narrator of the mummers was dressed as Father Christmas.
The custom of Mumming might go back to Roman times, when people used to dress up for parties at New Year. It is thought that, in the UK, it was first done on St. Thomas's day or the shortest day of the year.
Different types of entertainments were done in different parts of the UK In parts of Durham, Yorkshire and Devon a special sword dance was performed. There were also different names for mumming around the UK too. In Scotland it was known as 'Gusards' in Somerset, 'Mumping', in Warwickshire or 'Thomasing' and 'Corning' in Kent.
In Medieval times, it had turned into an excuse for people to go begging round the houses and committing crimes. It became so bad that Henry VIII, made a law saying that anyone that caught mumming wearing a mask would be put in prison for three months!
One poem that people said when mumming was:
Christmas is coming, the beef is getting fat,
Please drop a penny in the old man's hat.
Over the years, this was changed into a very similar poem that is said by some carol singers today:
Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat,
Please put a penny in the old man's hat.
The early settlers from the UK took the custom of Mumming to Canada. It is known as Murmuring in Canada, but is banned in most places because people used it as an excuse for begging.
There's also a famous Mummer's Day parade New Year's Day in Philadelphia, in the USA, which lasts over six hours!
Mumming is still done in parts of the UK, USA and Canada.
EVEN KOSHER IS NOW CORRUPT EVEN IN THE US.
'Now, it takes some chutzpah to call the authorities unkosher, but some rabbis have rallied to Vadei's support for doing so. Conservative movement Rabbi Andrew Sacks says the kosher inspection system has become corrupt'.
Some Restaurants In Israel Declare A Kosher Rebellion
By Anthony Kuhn • Nov 30, 2012
All Things Considered
- Israelis eat at a kosher McDonald's restaurant in Tel Aviv.
David Silverman / Getty Images
Originally published on December 13, 2012 5:41 am
The Carousela cafe in West Jerusalem is one of a handful of restaurants and cafes in Israel staging a bit of a rebellion by defying Jewish religious authorities who claim they are the only ones who can certify restaurants as kosher, or in compliance with Jewish dietary laws.
Activists, rabbis and customers recently gathered in support of Carousela after the authorities threatened to fine the cafe if it claimed to be kosher without a certificate from the rabbinate. And now Carousela and four other restaurants are taking the authorities to court over the issue, according to The Times of Israel.
Cafe manager Jonathan Vadei says the rabbinate's kosher inspectors are not doing their job, and he and some colleagues have decided to form their own association to do it.
Now, it takes some chutzpah to call the authorities unkosher, but some rabbis have rallied to Vadei's support for doing so. Conservative movement Rabbi Andrew Sacks says the kosher inspection system has become corrupt.
"There are many restaurants and institutions where the inspector comes in once a month simply to collect a check and does not appear the rest of the month," Sacks says. "But beyond that, a serious problem is that the inspectors themselves are paid directly by the restaurateur. So there can be no objectivity."
But Rabbi Eliyahu Schlesinger of the Jerusalem Religious Council says any restaurant that calls itself kosher without a certificate is breaking the law. "To become a doctor you need certification; to become a lawyer you need certification; to be kosher, you need certification," Schlesinger says through an interpreter. "I don't know who is behind this. Probably interest groups, maybe with political interests in mind. The result will be anarchy."
For centuries before the modern state of Israel was established in 1948, there was no central authority over kosher inspections. They were done by private groups of rabbis, as they are in the United States.
"It was based on trust, and that's what we need to install again: the trust between the customer and the owner of the restaurant, without the monopoly and without all the other commercial interests of the chief rabbinate," says Conservative Rabbi Ehud Bandel.
But then the Israeli parliament, or Knesset, gave the rabbinate and ultra-Orthodox Jews a monopoly, not just over kosher inspections but over weddings and funerals too. It also granted the ultra-Orthodox special privileges, such as exemption from military service.
Now Israelis are questioning all of these monopolies and privileges.
Bandel says it is time to reclaim Judaism from the religious establishment. "It's up to us to make sure that the Knesset will change this legislation and enable freedom of religion and free market of religion, which will only be good for religious life here in Israel."
Some see this issue as part of a larger culture war between Orthodox and secular Jews. But Jerusalem City Council member Rachel Azaria says that the two sides are just trying to find ways to live together and improve the city.
"For 15 years, the ultra-Orthodox were taking over, and the regular Orthodox and the liberal and the secular were leaving the city," Azaria says. "What happened over the past few years is we got a secular mayor, and that kind of changed something, and we got our self-confidence back and we're campaigning again to make sure the city is the way we want it to be."
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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
In Jerusalem, a handful of restaurants and cafes are staging a kind of kosher rebellion. They're defying Jewish religious authorities who claim to be the only ones who can certify restaurants as kosher or in compliance with Jewish dietary laws. NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports from Jerusalem that the dispute is part of a wider debate about how the country should manage the relationship between synagogue and state.
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ANTHONY KUHN, BYLINE: Activists, rabbis and customers recently gathered in support of the Carousela Cafe in West Jerusalem. The city's rabbinate recently threatened to fine the cafe if it claimed to be kosher without the rabbinate's certificate. Cafe manager Jonathan Vadei says the rabbinate's kosher inspectors are not doing their job. And he and some colleagues have decided to form their own association to do it. He says he's determined...
JONATHAN VADEI: To show everybody what happening in this institution. It's not kosher at all. This institution is not kosher at all.
KUHN: It takes some chutzpah to call the rabbinate unkosher. And some rabbis have rallied to Vadei's support for doing so. Conservative movement Rabbi Andrew Sacks says the kosher inspection system has become corrupt.
RABBI ANDREW SACKS: There are many restaurants and institutions where the inspector comes in once a month simply to collect a check and does not appear the rest of the month. But beyond that, a serious problem is that the inspectors themselves are paid directly by the restaurateur, so there can be no sense of objectivity.
KUHN: But Rabbi Eliyahu Schlesinger of the Jerusalem Religious Council says any restaurant that calls itself kosher without a certificate is breaking the law.
RABBI ELIYAHU SCHLESINGER: (Through translator) To become a doctor, you need certification. To become a lawyer, you need certification. To be kosher, you need certification. I don't know who is behind this. Probably interest groups, maybe with political interests in mind. The result will be anarchy.
KUHN: Conservative movement Rabbi Ehud Bandel points out that for centuries before the modern state of Israel was established in 1948, there was no central authority over kosher inspections. They were done by private groups of rabbis, as they are in the U.S.
RABBI EHUD BANDEL: It was based on trust, and that's what we need to install again: the trust between the customer and the owner of the restaurant, and without a monopoly and without all the other commercial interests of the chief rabbinate.
KUHN: But the Israeli parliament, or Knesset, gave the rabbinate and ultra-Orthodox Jews a monopoly, not just over kosher inspections but over weddings and funerals too. It also granted the ultra-Orthodox special privileges such as exemption from military service. But Israelis are now questioning all of these monopolies and privileges. Rabbi Bandel says it's time to reclaim Judaism from the religious establishment.
BANDEL: It's up to us to make sure that the Knesset will change this legislation and enable freedom of religion and free market of religion, which will be only good for religious life here in Israel.
KUHN: Some see this issue as part of a larger culture war between Orthodox and secular Jews. But Jerusalem City Council member Rachel Azaria says that the two sides are just trying to find ways to live together and improve the city.
RACHEL AZARIA: For 15 years, the ultra-Orthodox were taking over, and the regular Orthodox and the liberal and the secular were leaving the city. And what happened over the past few years is that we got a secular mayor, and that kind of changed something. And we also got our self-confidence back and we're campaigning again to make sure that the city will be the way we want it to be.
How will ONE WORLD ONE GOVERNANCE HANDLE THINGS LIKE RELIGIOUS REGULATIONS TO FOOD AND DRINK? Well, it doesn't look good for Foreign Economic Zones that have absolutely no regulations. The answer for ONE WORLD ONE GOVERNANCE may simply be NO RELIGION TOO.
This is a very good public policy issue for WE THE PEOPLE. How does religious requirements fit into our communities? Right now I suspect local Muslim and Jewish communities are policing their own food sources just as ALL US CITIZENS are having to do with our food resources!
'Anxious about the industry’s rampant corruption (half of all “kosher” food was not), price-fixing and bitter rivalries (including drive-by shootings in poultry markets), New York started the trend in 1915 with a bill saying that food labelled fit for Jews must comply with “orthodox Hebrew religious requirements”. But in the past 20 years courts in Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey and New York have deemed such laws unconstitutional. New Jersey firms must merely produce documentary proof that their products are kosher'.
Malaysia and this Sultan of Brunei is known as one of the most brutal and enslaving of Foreign Economic Zones-----we don't want someone like that setting our standards but global 1% and their 2% love this guy!.
'Misuse of the halal label can mean jail. The Sultanate of Brunei is proud of its mark, the Brunei Halal Brand. It wants to certify products around the world'.
Food and religion
A meaty question
Who should regulate kosher and halal food?
Feb 9th 2013
Our other branch does kosher
KEEPING the government’s nose out of anything with a religious whiff is one of America’s founding principles. With this in mind on January 31st a federal district judge in Minnesota dismissed a lawsuit contending that Hebrew National, a big American meat-products brand, fraudulently labelled its hot dogs “100% kosher”. Critics had claimed that the meat used did not meet kosher requirements. The judge, however, ruled that since kosher is a standard “intrinsically religious in nature”, under the first amendment it was none of the court’s business. Triangle K, the certifying body that gave the wieners the kosher seal of approval, and its Orthodox rabbis, would have to rebut the critics themselves. Unhappy customers could always shop elsewhere.
Few Western countries have laws explicitly regulating kosher or halal products—chiefly meat produced by the ritual slaughter of animals, subject to particular standards of health or hygiene. Governments prefer to rely on private companies and market forces to do the job. If people find out certified items are not as pure as they claim to be, they stop buying them. When governments do get involved it is usually under the auspices of consumer protection or food safety. They have been wary of wading in on specifically religious grounds. But with Muslim populations swelling throughout Europe and the business of religiously approved goods booming, the question of how to regulate such products is becoming more urgent.
America has been battling with this issue for decades. Of its 50 states, 22 have introduced kosher-fraud laws over the past century. Anxious about the industry’s rampant corruption (half of all “kosher” food was not), price-fixing and bitter rivalries (including drive-by shootings in poultry markets), New York started the trend in 1915 with a bill saying that food labelled fit for Jews must comply with “orthodox Hebrew religious requirements”. But in the past 20 years courts in Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey and New York have deemed such laws unconstitutional. New Jersey firms must merely produce documentary proof that their products are kosher.
Private certifiers have stepped into the breach. Five regulatory heavyweights (not including Triangle K) dominate the market, certifying products the world over. All the main kosher meat producers in America today adhere to the same stringent standard, “glatt kosher”, which includes especially careful examination of animals’ organs for any signs of illness that would render the meat unacceptable.
The only notable exception to this is Hebrew National, says Timothy Lytton of Albany Law School, who has written a book about kosher regulation (Hebrew National says it has “always stood by its kosher distinction and status” and a Triangle K rabbi says it made “kosher meat available to the greater American public, and not just the glatt consumer”.) The certifying bodies do a much better job than the government did, says Mr Lytton. They pounce on mistakes and are swift to admit their own. America’s kosher food industry generates $12 billion in sales a year so no one wants to lose customers because of sloppiness.
In Israel, by contrast, the state is closely involved, promoting the Chief Rabbinate’s kosher label as the only acceptable one. But those standards are the lowest common denominator, says Mr Lytton, and many religious Jews find them too lax. They insist on stricter checks from private companies which costs extra.
Still, Jews are more united than Muslims about the exact nature of their religion’s dietary rules. Jewish law leaves no doubt that stunning animals before slaughter is prohibited. Muslims disagree about that. Hundreds of halal-certification bodies operate, with varying standards and logos. They differ in their methods of slaughter. Some countries allow products containing a small percentage of non-halal ingredients to be classed as halal. Others do not. “Halal” pies and pasties recently served to Muslim prisoners in British jails turned out to contain traces of pork—but came from a supplier approved by the Halal Food Authority, one of two main British guarantors (it has now delisted the firm).
Tayyabs, a popular Punjabi curry house in the London borough of Tower Hamlets, Britain’s most Muslim area, does not even bother with certificates. The manager says that he knows and trusts his suppliers and his customers know and trust him.
That may work for a small, local restaurant but multinational firms cannot be so nonchalant. Last month McDonald’s and one of its franchises in Dearborn in south-east Michigan, which has the country’s highest concentration of Arab-Americans, paid $700,000 to settle allegations (which it denies) that it had falsely advertised its food as meeting Islamic dietary laws.
A worldwide standard for the $700 billion halal food market is one idea. Muslim countries, where governments see ruling on religious matters as part of their job, are keen to help. JAKIM, Malaysia’s department for Islamic development, takes responsibility for upholding halal standards. Misuse of the halal label can mean jail. The Sultanate of Brunei is proud of its mark, the Brunei Halal Brand. It wants to certify products around the world. That would help non-Muslim producers, such as Brazil, already one of the world’s largest exporters of halal meat, which are keen to expand in Muslim markets.
The importance of the halal label spreads well beyond food. Many of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims want reassurances that medicines and make-up, for example, are free from animal products or alcohol. Websites are abuzz with the news of a halal nail varnish produced in Poland. Just don’t test it on animals.
BUYING A FAIR TRADE GIFT? PLEASE EDUCATE AS TO WHERE WE ARE WITH THAT PUBLIC POLICY!
'Fair Trade - is it fair? There really isn't an easy answer to this, but I would like to give those who are interested at least a little more information on the other less well researched side of this subject'.
Just as with the policies of organic, free range, anti-GMO the policies around FAIR TRADE have these few decades been not only corrupted but used to harm global food producers once tied to doing the right thing environmentally with food justice. Global grocers, food and drink venues like Starbucks claiming FAIR TRADE and charging more for being social benefit are often NOT BEING SOCIAL BENEFIT. The push to correct this by justice groups at a time when global shipping has become totally captured to monopolies and becoming too expensive for smaller shipping companies is questionable. The policies of Foreign Economic Zone have driven this corruption as now every nation wants to have products in this premium market. So, today we are seeing again lower-quality food product being sold as higher price-----
'Even worse, there are many instances, where the higher grade coffees are sold at a competitive price above the Fair Trade minimum and lower standard coffees are designated for the Fair Trade market where the minimum price can be demanded despite the low quality'.
Below is an article that may be written by a global citizen simply wanting to deregulate yet another market BUT HIS POINTS ARE RIGHT-ON. What was a left-social Democratic food policy has been corrupted to the point of being harmful to those growers wanting to do the right thing.
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Unfair Fair Trade
I have decided to speak up about something that is close to my heart for obvious reasons, and because I continually come across so much misinformation on the subject. I am also disturbed by the marketing hype that seems to allow lazy consumers to feel good about buying something that is not necessarily what it purports to be.
Fair Trade - is it fair? There really isn't an easy answer to this, but I would like to give those who are interested at least a little more information on the other less well researched side of this subject. Don't get me wrong, the principle behind providing a minimum price for the purchase of coffee or any other product for that matter, is a noble one. I am sure that many who market the official certified product believe they are doing something positive. But, the fact is, institutionalizing the pricing of coffee or other commodities does not necessarily solve the real problem, and in some cases may even unfairly penalizes those for whom it was intended.
Let's start with the fact that becoming 'Certified Fair Trade' is expensive. The bureaucratic and business hurdles needed to become certified are often too much and too expensive for the poorest farmers. So, by example, the biggest supplier of Fair Trade coffee to the United States is Mexico. Coffee laborer wages are 18 times higher in Mexico than in Ethiopia where Fair Trade coffee is much less well represented.
Secondly, the chosen method to acquire certification often results in farmers grouping together in cooperatives to defray the costs of certification. As a result, the coffee is then mixed together and what might be exceptionally good from one farm is rendered mediocre by the product eventually produced by the cooperative. Even worse, there are many instances, where the higher grade coffees are sold at a competitive price above the Fair Trade minimum and lower standard coffees are designated for the Fair Trade market where the minimum price can be demanded despite the low quality.
Thirdly, the Fair Trade label has been used by unscrupulous corporations who can garner goodwill and kudos for their company by claiming to support the poor farmers when actually they are simply using the lack of knowledge on the part of the consumer to increase sales.
The organization responsible for promoting Fair Trade in the US is called Transfair USA, and like any organization of its type, it requires millions of dollars to maintain. The consumer eventually pays for this extra expense and so, for potentially lower grade coffee from a cooperative, to compensate for the 'fair' price and the administrative cost and without really benefitting the truly poor farmers, we end up paying a premium.
So what is the solution to this conundrum? Well, in most cases, if you actually ask the farmers concerned, they will tell you that the problem does not really lie in procuring a good price for the coffee, but in the environment in which they actually produce the coffee. In Kenya, where the government controls coffee production and even the exporting of coffee through the coffee auction, corruption and exploitation results in having to pay inflated prices for milling and other processes mandated by the government. Then, the government takes its cut in the auction process, thus diminishing the money actually making its way back to the farmer.
This is an all too common situation, and highlights the real problem. If we believe in the operation of a free market economy, then why do we believe in what amounts to price fixing in the trading of certain commodities such as coffee? If farmers produce a great product, then the resulting demand will no doubt push the price up accordingly. At the heart of this problem is one of my own concerns with the US coffee market. The consumer just isn't discerning enough. If the majority of people who drink coffee would simply refuse to gulp down millions of gallons of poor quality beverage every day, and would be willing to pay for quality, then quality of the coffee would attract the appropriate price. If we wish to impact the lives of the farmers in countries where corruption and bad practice are stifling the farmers' ability to succeed, then we should make a stand just as we do when convenient with other countries on human rights abuses. If we truly want to help the farmers, then we should be working with them to improve practices and their environment in relationships across country borders that allow us to bring a truly exceptional product to the market place, for which they get their just rewards. This might take the form of investment in new equipment and updating practices. Though, the irony here is that Brazil, which is now highly mechanized in its coffee production has disposed of 10s of thousands of coffee related jobs for poor workers by the introduction of mechanization.
Fair Trade sounds good, means well and has the right starting point, but the outworking is not only flawed, it actually damages those who are unable to get on board, and it is tantamount to price fixing and inflates the underlying cost through unnecessary administration and certification costs.
At Buon Giorno, we will continually seek to purchase the best quality coffee from suppliers who are ethical enough to pursue relationships with farmers with no middle man and who are intent on increasing the proliferation of quality coffee in the United States just like any other product that has to rely on its quality to attract sales.
I DARE SAY THAT FREE MARKET IS NOT THE SOLUTION EITHER BECAUSE AS WE HAVE EXPERIENCED THESE FEW DECADES OF NAKED CRONY CAPITALISM WE HAVE NOT HAD FREE MARKET SINCE REAGAN/CLINTON.