As a nutritionist and journalist, ingredient list hunting is one activity that is right up my alley.
Oh, yes, I do mean “activity”. It is not at all odd for me to walk the aisles of a supermarket for a good half hour with the sole intention of seeing if I encounter any blog-worthy “WTF”-ness.
I’m not in there for any other reason. I don’t need garlic for dinner. Not even a stick of gum from the checkout counter. I’m just there to walk and — cross my fingers! — come across something heinous.
Alas, I struck gold today with Calavo’s Guacamole Tortilla Chips.
Here is what the front of the bag tells us:
“Rich Guacamole Taste!”
That’s more than a statement — that is an enthused proclamation. But wait, there’s more:
“So green and so good, you’ll think you already dipped.”
Alright, then. Let’s get our avocado goodness on. First, though, let’s take a look at the ingredient list (I purposefully bold part of it to make sure you read the really crazy part).
Whole white corn, vegetable oil and/or canola oil and/or soybean oil and/or sunflower oil, guacamole seasoning (salt, cheddar cheese [pasteurized milk, salt, culture, enzymes], lactose, whey, buttermilk, maltodextrin, onion powder, garlic powder, sour cream [cream, nonfat milk, culture, enzymes], monosodium glutamate, citric acid, spice, lactic acid, natural flavor, tocopherols, yellow 6 lake, yellow 5 lake, titanium dioxide, blue 1 lake, red 40, corn flour, lime.
I could potentially understand the use of guacamole seasoning in these chips, but why is it made from cheddar cheese? At least Kraft’s highly controversial “faux guacamole” dip contained a smidge of avocado!
The presence of all those artificial dyes in Calavo’s product also makes the “so green” tagline sound a whole less appetizing.
What’s particularly odd, though, is that the company’s guacamole dips are the real thing (no artificial colors, no weird fillers, etc.). These chips certainly tarnish their brand name.