Monday, August 14, 2006

Shame on you, Quaker Oats Company

First let me say that I LOVE oatmeal. Always have. My mom made mine with milk, lots of butter and sugar(thank you, Motherkitty). So here's the deal. My husband bought the girls some instant oatmeal in yummy flavors : Strawberries & Cream, Blueberries & Cream, Peaches & Cream, and Bananas & Cream.

So Little One picks Blueberries & Cream and I start to make it for her. As I stir, I peruse the ingredients list. Imagine my astonishment when I read that there are no blueberries in the Blueberries & Cream. That's funny, I think, what were those little dark blue things that looked like dried blueberries. Figs, I tell you! Ok, I give them credit, they did put some blueberry concentrate in there. Oooh. That was low on the list behind: "dried figs, dried corn syrup solids, modified food starch, sugar, dextrose, glycerine...." And then to make all that stuff, etc. blueberry-like they had to add "blue 2 lake" and "red 40 lake". Huh? How hard would it have been just to put dried blueberries in?

Ok, so know I am thinking, surely there are peaches in the Peaches & Cream. Nope. Dehydrated apples. Strawberries in Strawberries & Cream? Nope. "Sugar flavored fruit pieces": namely "dehydrated apples [treated with sodium sulfite to promote color retention], artificial strawberry flavor, citric acid, red 40". What? Where's the strawberries? Bananas in Bananas & Cream? This one was the closest with "banana flake powder."

To top this off, I went to the website for some info and found this in the FAQ:

Q: Are your oats organic?
A: No. However, it's important to understand that organically grown foods are not more nutritious or safe than foods grown using more modern agricultural practices. The same standards of nutrition and safety apply to both types of foods.
(emphasis mine)

What? Isn't is common knowelge that modern agricultural practices are filled with chemical fertilizers, chemical bug killers, and hormones, etc? How are all those things better for you than pesticide-free, hormone-free, other chemical-free food? Grrrr.

Quaker Oats, I am very disappointed with you. I am very glad that my children didn't like this very well. Dancer Girl thought it was way too sweet. You should have seen how big her eyes got when I told her she those weren't strawberries. That Little One wasn't eating blueberries. Sounds like deceptive advertising to me. Sure if you squint and look close enough on the front cover, in a font much smaller than the word "FRUIT," you will see the words "artificially flavored fruit pieces." Oh well. I guess this one gets a 2 thumbs down.

Contact the Quaker Company and let them know you what you think about this:

Call Quaker toll-free or Email Quaker (U.S.) or Email (Canada)


Later in the day update, after much rumination and meditation and discussion:
I also just noticed the amount of sugars (carbohydrates) in each packet of instant oatmeal. The low ones were 26 grams and the high ones 27. That is just about the same amount in only 8 oz. of Coca Cola. And we all know a can of coke is 12 0z., but still, that is a lot of sugar for a little bowl of oatmeal. From what I have read that is anywhere from 6-10 teaspoons of sugar per serving. This article states 10 teaspoons per 12 oz of coke. According this article, a big bowl of Frosted Flakes may have less sugars/carbohydrates than a bowl of this instant oatmeal. Would you make yourself a bowl of oatmeal and put 10 teaspoons of sugar on it?

Now don't get me wrong. I like Coke. I drink Coke. I gave my kids Fruit Loops for a snack today. It is just that sugar is so addictive. You expect the sugar in a coke or sugar cereal, not in your instant oatmeal, trying to pass itself off as healthy and full of fruit. That is the problem I have: this product falls in the same category as Fruit Loops, Coca Cola, Cocoa Pebbles, Big Macs, etc. to me. They can put what they want in the product, and let whoever wants to buy it. Just don't try to convince me that it is as healthy and good for you regular oatmeal with fruit in it that you added yourself. I send them a royal raspberry.

Ok, now I am done.

19 comments:

Franny said...

Holy moly, I am shocked! Though, I always thought those little peach pieces tasted like apple...
Ya gotta love the 'spin' on the organic question.

Alissa said...

Ha. That's too funny, for lack of a better word. Not that I'm all gung ho organic or anything, but you really gotta think it would be simpler to just add peaches the the peach, blueberries to the blueberry, etc... And to plainly state that organic and non-organic foods are the same, well...that's a stretch even for me.

Good thing we like our oatmeal with brown sugar and maple syrup--that we add ourselves. I just purchase plain oats.

Abandoned in Pasadena said...

You might start doing all your shopping at your local health food store where they sell everything that's organic. I even buy my candy there...but it still makes me fat.*LOL*

Alipurr said...

I don't mind things being non-organic, but to pretend it is just as healthy as organic is just plain silly.

Motherkitty said...

The more processed the food, the more crap that they add. That's why I always served real, unfettered, oatmeal that you add your own real butter and the amount of sugar (usually one tsp) you wanted. Not enough sugar to choke a horse. That's why I hate fast food restaurants and would rather eat homemade meals.

Good research and thanks for reminding me of all the oatmeal and Cream of Wheat I used to make for you kids. I know that you still love COW, especially with a lot of lumps in it.

Motherkitty said...

BTW, organic IS better for you, I don't care what the food industry tells you. They use all those chemical, hormones, antibiotics, and other enhancers to increase their profits, not the quality of their food. You can keep the "instant" anything any of those companies produce. Also, they add too much high fructose corn syrup in everything they produce -- which is probably the cause of so much diabetes and obesity in this country.

Motherkitty said...

I'm done ranting for now.

Tomas Dennis said...

I sent an email to the company.

Motherkitty said...

I also e-mailed Quaker Oats and balled them out!

Alipurr said...

Mom, Dancer Girl likes her Cream of Wheat with lots of lumps in it, too, though I can't seem to get it lumpy, ha ha.

Thanks mom and dad for all your support. We still probably eat way too much junk. I just had a small glass of Dr. Thunder (8 oz approx generic Dr. Pepper). I guess that was my 10 teaspoons or 40 grams of sugar for today. Don't worry, mom, I ate all my lunch, so I got to have a sweet treat. I made a homemade broccoli and cheese soup with chicken and rice (it was quite accidental and quite good). Now to go find my toothbrush.

Leish said...

Wow! That's alot of sugar. I guess I stick with plain oats. I usually open a can of mixed fruit, if I don't have fresh fruit, and eat my oatmeal with that too.

jellyhead said...

I am right behind you here, Alipurr. If I am going to give my kids junky food, I want to at least KNOW it's junky (instead of masquerading as a nutritious food)

By the way, I looooove Cream of Wheat - with or without lumps! (My mother gave it to me as a kid, too)

MrsGreenThumb said...

Another thing you should watch is the amount of sodium in the food. We eat way to much salt. We no longer eat processed meats with sodium nitrite such as lunch meat, sausage, bacon and hot dogs. It's easy to buy lunch meats that don't have sodium nitrite, just check the labels. Canned vegetables are big offenders of too much salt.

On the oatmeal front, I buy organic oatmeal at Trader Joe's. One kind they sell is steel cut Irish style oatmeal that has an interesting consistency. It takes longer to cook but I like it a lot. If you check the processed oatmeal, it is also very high in sodium, the plain oatmeal has none. It's good to get your kids eating healthy when they are young.

I'm glad the birthday party was such a success. Give Dancer Girl a hug for me.

somershade said...

That's why we pray over our food,not to get poisoned.:)
You inspired me on the foot scripture from your comment the other day, thanks.I love you xxxooo

Lisa-Anne said...

Hey ALI! :)
Baby's here... check out my blog! :) Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you!
We only eat organic, steel cut Irish Oats for our oatmeal... :) :)
Love ya,
Lisa-Anne and Andrew, Jesse, Ivy and brand new Baby David Blaze

Lisa-Anne said...

Hey ALI! :)
Baby's here... check out my blog! :) Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you!
We only eat organic, steel cut Irish Oats for our oatmeal... :) :)
Love ya,
Lisa-Anne and Andrew, Jesse, Ivy and brand new Baby David Blaze

Lisa-Anne said...

Hey ALI! :)
Baby's here... check out my blog! :) Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you!
We only eat organic, steel cut Irish Oats for our oatmeal... :) :)
Love ya,
Lisa-Anne and Andrew, Jesse, Ivy and brand new Baby David Blaze

Lisa-Anne said...

Hey ALI! :)
Baby's here... check out my blog! :) Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you!
We only eat organic, steel cut Irish Oats for our oatmeal... :) :)
Love ya,
Lisa-Anne and Andrew, Jesse, Ivy and brand new Baby David Blaze

Michelle said...

We are trying to move away from eating any processed foods. Since my pregnancy and birth of our son, we have been eating more organic and natural foods. It is a hard transition, but I think it is worth it for my son.
Sorry to hear about the instant oatmeal; my hubby loves that stuff.