Trick or Treat



Trick or Treat

As a child, nothing sent chills down my spine more than anticipating a ‘huge haul’ on Halloween night. We would tear through the neighborhood with treat bag in hand until our totes overflowed with goodies. Of course, now I would not touch much of what we greedily gobbled from our Halloween booty. The trick was on me after getting ill from so much sugar.

There are plenty of ‘tricks’ out there when it comes to our food.
Consider these:


– Olive Oil. One of the most masqueraded foods out there
– Milk. Some of it doesn’t ‘do a body good’
– Honey. One of the more fraudulent foods
– Spices. Cut with twigs, leaves and who knows what else
– Orange juice. Contains many unwanted guests
– Coffee. Contains some scary ingredients
– Tea. Leaves, sawdust and things that make you go hmmmm
– Fish. One of the most mislabeled foods out there
– Natural. This word is misused on labels
– Sugar. Hides under many frightening aliases
– Labels. Food labeling is big business – buyer beware

What’s a consumer to do? These treats are your best defense:


– Organic.
– Locally grown – get to know your food source
– Make your own jams, jellies from fresh fruit
– Whole foods
– Fresh seasonal produce
– Meat from local farms or farm shares
– High quality and trusted brands
– Labels — tells the story if you really look
– Food fraud database (check it out)
– Whole bean coffee and organic teas


Food fraud is nothing new. It’s been tricking consumers since the Middle Ages when the spice trade was in full swing. The best thing you can do is be aware and educated. Stay current on food safety news and learn to read labels, while purchasing your food as much as possible from trusted sources. Don’t be tricked!