Tuesday, May 01, 2007
If more consumers and their advocates don't speak out soon,what we know in the U.S. as "chocolate" may no longer be the product you've enjoyed all your life, but a cheaper substitute if the FDA permits a change in its Standard of Identity. From the awareness website, "Don't Mess With Our Chocolate":
if some members of the U.S. Chocolate Industry have their way, it will negatively change the quality of chocolate you love. Their plan is to change the basic formula of chocolate in order to use vegetable fat substitutes in place of cocoa butter, and to use milk substitutes in the place of nutritionally superior milk. These changes will have adverse effects on the eating, physical and nutritional quality of chocolate, and beg the question: What consumer benefit is associated with implementing these changes? The answer is none.[via Chez Pim] [Update: public comment on the proposed formula change closed April 25th. Now we'll just have to wait and see.]
- Getting stuck in a vat of melted chocolate isn't as much fun as it sounds. That's exactly what happened to a Wisconsin chocolate factory worker, who was lucky to be extracted alive from the 110°F vat after spending over two-and-a-half hours chest deep inside. From the Journal-Sentinel:
Kenosha - An ordinary night's work at the chocolate company turned dangerous for Darmin Garcia early today when he fell into a vat of the molten goo and was trapped for more than two hours. "I was pushing the chocolate down into the vat because it was stuck," said Garcia, 21. "It came loose and I just slid down the hopper into the chocolate." Garcia's co-workers at the Debelis Corp. first tried to pull Garcia out but his pants were caught on a roller. That's when they called 911 and the Kenosha Fire and Police departments both responded, said police Sgt. Eric Larsen.
"It was in my hair, in my ears, my mouth, everywhere," Garcia said. "I felt like I weighed 900 pounds. I couldn't move." Garcia said his colleagues added cocoa butter to the vat in an attempt to thin the chocolate. [Kenosha Fire Department Captain Greg] Sinnen said firefighters on the ladder company that responded to the accident helped scoop the chocolate out of the vat. Eventually, enough chocolate was removed that Garcia was able to take off his pants and be pulled out.
- What exactly is "sushi grade fish"? It may not be what you think - it's not the freshest 'just caught' fish, but fish that has been frozen to the proper low temperature for a long enough time to kill parasites that may be present in the species. Yum.
- New York Times says forget horses, scientists describe being "Hung Like a Duck": "Obviously you can’t have something like that without some place to put it in. You need a garage to park the car."
- Is the serving of offal meat from the bleeding innards of a decapitated goat a "best practice" when promoting a videogame product; say, the PlayStation 2 Console? No? Well, SONY didn't think so, either. From the Daily Mail:
Electronics giant Sony has sparked a major row over animal cruelty and the ethics of the computer industry by using a freshly slaughtered goat to promote a violent video game. The corpse of the decapitated animal was the centrepiece of a party to celebrate the launch of the God Of War II game for the company’s PlayStation 2 console.
- Bathsheba Sculpture produces stunning three-dimensional models of complex mathematical formulae in metal, laser-etched crystal, and more. The Calabi-Yau Quintic manifold is particularly engrossing, I think.
- SfGate has a slideshow of the incredible damage at the crumbled section of freeway ramp which connects Interstate 80 to Interstate 580 in Oakland, caused when a gasoline tanker overturned and caught fire. I'm still amazed that no one was killed in the incident.
- Looking for some geeky-but-racy water cooler conversation starters? Check out Neatorama's kinda-safe-for-work 30 Strangest Animal Mating Habits - considering how kinky giraffes, porcupines, and even red garter snakes appear to be, it may forever change your idea of what constitutes "unnatural acts."
- Can't identify that pill? Pharmer.org is a non-profit educational website that might help you recognize that mysterious capsule you found. (Warning, use at your own risk)
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