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I just noticed that my bag of Lay's potato chips, in its description of the goodness of its product, says as a first claim that it is made from "farm-grown potaoes."  I haven't heard any news about vat-grown or hydroponic potatoes, so I imagine that the phrase just means "potatoes" -- though it gives rise to thoughts that Lay's does not intend, I think, for me to think.  I am reminded of a shampoo I examined once that said it was "made from ingredients found in nature itself!"  Which made me wish for something that wasn't.  What would THAT be like?


( 30 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 2nd, 2014 11:18 pm (UTC)
One of the things that really bugs me is some people's conviction that "all natural" or "organic" mean "good for people" as if there were no "all naturally" or "organically" occurring poisons, venoms, and otherwise harmful substances.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 01:09 am (UTC)
Cyanide, cobra venom, wolfsbane, amanita phalloides, tigers, Manhattan taxi drivers...
(no subject) - ruthling - Nov. 3rd, 2014 02:41 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2014 12:56 am (UTC)
what natural is
I believe it was William Burroughs who said something like this: "The only unnatural act is the one that can't be done."
Nov. 3rd, 2014 01:05 am (UTC)
Depends on how you define your terms, I guess. Does "found" only mean "stumbled across" or does it include "discovered" and "invented" and "derived"? Does "nature" include genetic engineering, alien planets, and alternate universes?

'When I use a word,' Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, 'it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.'

'The question is,' said Alice, 'whether you can make words mean so many different things.'

'The question is,' said Humpty Dumpty, 'which is to be master — that's all.'
Nov. 3rd, 2014 02:08 am (UTC)
This exact Alice quote appears in Little, Big. "Glory" is even the subsection's name! I remember how happy I was when I came to this part on my first reading.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 04:32 pm (UTC)
I have been puzzling over this thread for a while, since it seems like any chemical compound created in the laboratory is an ingredient "not found in nature." I suppose the issue is whether the individual chemicals forming a new molecular structure are "ingredients" or not. The new molecule itself is certainly not found in nature except insofar as the laboratory is nature as well as culture.

"Farm-grown potatoes," however, seems to imply that real men harvest wild potatoes, which sounds like something you could only get at Whole Foods in certain months of the year.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 04:41 pm (UTC)
I'm not even certain that "farm-grown" excludes hydroponic potatoes. You could have a hydroponic farm, right?

Heck, even Pringles might qualify; they're made of starch from potatoes which were, presumably, grown on a farm. For my money, the phrase means nothing at all.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 05:12 pm (UTC)
If it's not natural, doesn't it have to be supernatural?
Nov. 4th, 2014 02:13 am (UTC)
Or subnormal.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC)
Free-range wild potatoes
Long ago, when the nonsentient ancestors of Mr. Potatohead roamed the Serengeti...
Nov. 4th, 2014 02:13 am (UTC)
Re: Free-range wild potatoes
Re: Free-range wild potatoes - (Anonymous) - Nov. 4th, 2014 04:02 am (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2014 09:05 pm (UTC)
from Bob Scott
Farm is a comforting word - all soft consonants. Maybe they just want to distinguish their basic chips from Lay's Oven Baked Original Naturally Baked Potato Crisps, the top 4 ingredients of which are dried potatoes, corn starch, corn oil and sugar. Watch out for that unnatural baking, and accept no substitutes.
Nov. 3rd, 2014 09:14 pm (UTC)
Re: from Bob Scott
Fried in all natural grease, by all natural men, living an all natural lifestyle. . .
Re: from Bob Scott - (Anonymous) - Nov. 3rd, 2014 10:30 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 3rd, 2014 11:07 pm (UTC)
non-farm-grown potatoes may have been stolen from people's back-yards or allotments.

An ingredient no found in nature might be Plutonium. A shampoo using that would be a depilatory. At best. Or perhaps the water is an allotrope, such as Ice-9. Again, contra-indicated.
Nov. 4th, 2014 02:12 am (UTC)
Nov. 4th, 2014 12:49 am (UTC)
"Fresh" is the latest It Girl. If it can't be fresh, they'll claim it's "freshly baked" or "freshly prepared". You can bet potato chips will be marketed as "freshly harvested".
Nov. 4th, 2014 02:12 am (UTC)
I remember a dad n an ad exclaiming that something or other "Tastes fresh!" and I thought "Fresh is not a taste." It wasn't a remark meaning that the thing he'd beiiten into wasn't suspected of being rotten or spoiled.
Nov. 4th, 2014 04:14 am (UTC)
Tang. And instant rice and instant mashed potato flakes. My mother pouring out the oil, which we later learned was palm oil, from gallon cans of peanut butter. The peanut butter was lumped onto soft white 'bread'. Memories of sitting in the sun on the steps of a massive old stone farmhouse massaging a button of orange food colouring into a softening plastic bag of margarine. That you could not buy butter-coloured margarine had something to do with Newfoundland's late entry into the Canadian confederation. Some of the meals in some of our childhoods could not be accused of being fresh in, or to, any sense. They were, however, 'nutritious'.

Nov. 4th, 2014 04:58 am (UTC)
from Bob Scott
I recall reading as a kid that "enriched" white bread, with vitamins added after processing (like Rainbo & Wonder in the States) was illegal in Canada.
Re: from Bob Scott - (Anonymous) - Nov. 5th, 2014 04:41 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: from Bob Scott - Rodger Cunningham - Nov. 5th, 2014 01:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: from Bob Scott - (Anonymous) - Nov. 7th, 2014 09:50 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: from Bob Scott - crowleycrow - Nov. 5th, 2014 02:26 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - crowleycrow - Nov. 5th, 2014 12:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
Nov. 9th, 2014 06:42 pm (UTC)
A good item for the always amusing back page of Consumer Reports.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture did recently approve a genetically-modified potato strangely named the "Innate Potato," but even that would be farm-grown.
Nov. 9th, 2014 06:54 pm (UTC)
"Innate" possibly meanining "unborn" (rather than "inborn").
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Nov. 14th, 2014 07:45 am (UTC) - Expand
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