About a year and a half ago, I went on a rampage after finding out about carrageenan, a food additive that is an ingredient in many of the vegan foods I ate. While this processed red seaweed is vegan, it’s also a known carcinogen.
For someone who was then struggling with “what can I eat?,” I was finding myself very angry that something this bad for you could legally be added to something that was good for me. At the time, it was soy, almond, coconut, and hemp milks (and some vegan ice creams) that were the issue.
Note: Even organic labelled products contain carrageenan, an additive that acts as a binding agent and makes these products creamier and therefore more consistent and seductive to the consumer. An additive that causes cancer.
You should have heard me go off. I was furious. Shocked. Sad. I recall watching a video released by “So Delicious” where the product developer started off by saying, “while carrageenan is known to cause cancer and is an ingredient we use in our products …”
I stopped watching. Why listen further when he starts like that? And there I was with a cold glass of their holiday nog in my hand. Screw you, So Delicious.
I’ve settled down a bit. I’ve heard from some camps that it may not be as bad as originally reported. Some reports may be exaggerated. I found alternatives (including making my own cashew cream). I’m now somewhat convinced, there is a chance I can still have some of these products without fear of dying and still maintain my coveted vegan status.
And now, I hear about beaver excretions. That’s right, a yellowish excretion of the castor sac of beavers. The castor sac. Located right next to the beavers anal glands. The castor sac. In close proximity to the beaver’s beaver.
Who was the sick scientist who decided to taste beaver junk? And did he have to buy the beaver dinner beforehand?
This FDA-approved additive (called castoreum) is used in many foods including many I’ve been eating. Castoreum as a food additive is classified by the FDA as “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS). WTF, FDA, GRAS? I am (trying to be) 100% vegan, trying like hell to stay that way, and now I find out that I have to check ingredients for beaver? Used whenever a vanilla or strawberry flavor is desired. Ew.
The food industry is seriously messed up. It’s impossible to stay on course, even when you’re trying your hardest. Why should we have to even look for these ingredients in what we’re eating? In what we’re feeding our children? Erg.
I’m not happy. @%$€! the FDA.