Gluten Free Made in China

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Do you ever look at the back of a food product to see where it’s made?  I do.  I often wonder where food is produced so that I can do my best to support US companies as well as eating food that’s grown and produced here.  My ultimate goal is to eat as local as possible with a few exceptions (like coconut water).  However, I’ve noticed that a few companies whose gluten-free products taste great and are actually great ideas are producing them in China.  Maybe I’m a food snob, but something about this just doesn’t sit right with me when there’s plenty of the ingredients growing in the US.

I can totally understand that SOME food would need to be imported (like coconut water) because we simply don’t produce it here, but to say that you’ve got to import apples or almonds is ridiculous.  Simply put, I won’t support this notion.  There are too many issues with the food supply as it is and when you buy produce and food products form China that COULD have been made here, you’re asking for trouble.

4 Reasons Your Should Avoid Gluten-Free Food made in China

1) There’s no way that food in China can honestly be labeled ‘Organic”.  As far as I know, China doesn’t have a regulatory body that certifies produce to be grown organic.  Instead, other companies certify it after the fact.  Whole Foods got into trouble some time ago because they were selling a “California” mix of frozen veggies that actually came from China.  To this day, they still sell ‘Organic’ Edamame Beans (baby soy beans) in the freezer aisle that are clearly marked on the back as “Grown in China”.

2) Plus, you pay a premium to buy organic, so why buy something that wasn’t grown as such? Chances are that you’re potentially buying something that was never certified during it’s growing phase meaning that the produce or product is loaded with chemicals from the farm because they know that ‘Organic’ sounds really good to us here in the US.

3) Support the hard-working companies here in the US who provide jobs for those in the US.  At a time of our financial crisis when many people are out of work, I personally would rather support a US company, farmer, worker, etc. than give my hard-earned dough out to a company that wants to sell their product here, but doesn’t want to bare the expense of the making it here.  I’d rather see a US farm flourish that could produce the same exact ingredients.  Instead, we’re sending our money out of the country to save a few pennies.  In the process, we’re killing our job market and buying inferior products produced under loose regulations that would never be acceptable here.

4) Eat what could have been harvested here.  If you care at all about the environment and the decline of our planet’s health, then it’s a better plan all around to eat what grows here in the US.  Instead, foreign produce is grown half a world away and then shipped here using massive amounts of oil.  This ultimately creates an enormous carbon footprint.  Even Michael Pollan takes issue with produce from China (You can read more about that here: Fake organic foods proliferate from China).

Additional Reading:

The Organic Myth from Bloomberg Businessweek

Any books from Michael Pollan

China’s organic farms rooted in food-safety concerns from USA Today

What’s your feelings on eating food from China?  Do you care?

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  1. Debbie says

    Hi! This post could not be written any better! Reading through this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this write-up to him. Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

  2. says

    I heard that Trader Joe’s no longer sells ‘organic’ food from China. There’s a lot of concern in China itself about the problems with their food quality. I think if real organic certification develops there it would benefit everyone.

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