British stores could be flooded with “dangerous” bacon and ham from the US, marketed under misleading labels, as the result of a transatlantic trade deal, says the author of a new book based on a decade of investigation into the food industry.
The meat has been cured with nitrites extracted from vegetables, a practice not permitted by the European Commission because of evidence that it increases the risk of bowel cancer. But it is allowed in the US, where the product is often labelled as “all natural”. The powerful US meat industry is likely to insist that the export of nitrite-cured meat is a condition of a post-Brexit UK-US trade deal, which the UK government is under intense pressure to deliver.
Sodium Nitrate (and thus nitrite) is what cures meat. It does indeed provide the pink colour but it also stops botulism. Fairly important that, stopping botulism.
It used to be that people complained about “additives”. Unnatural things that were added to our food. To, you know, stop it poisoning us. Today the complaint is about steeping food in vegetable juice to stop it poisoning us.
It’s possible to start thinking that for some people there’s just a level of complaining that must happen. Solve the problem of sabre toothed tigers and they’ll moan instead about the terrors of hair braiding. Life just must be accompanied by a certain level of whingeing…..
You know, don’t shag the au pair – these days an equal opportunities adventure – and the same grief will be ladled out over the manner of the washing of the coffee cups.