Sunday, May 30, 2010

Alton Brown: Evil Salt Corporation Minion!

Today's New York Times health section tries to drag Alton Brown into the not-so-healthy mass consumption of salt by Americans.  It's a somewhat lame attempt to draw attention to a bland (needs salt) article that falls between corporate conspiracy theory and health news.  Alton doesn't really figure into the story, but author Michael Moss launches with this:

"“Salt is a pretty amazing compound,” Alton Brown, a Food Network star, gushes in a Cargill video called Salt 101. “So make sure you have plenty of salt in your kitchen at all times.”"

I like how the author says 'gushes' as if Alton is an evil minion of the salt industry. Guess he needs to sit down and watch some Good Eats and realize that Alton is very much opposed to processed foods.


Anne said...

Oh, thank God! Someone gets that AB preaches moderation in everything, and is not PUSHING salt.
Poor man is getting crucified for this. Plus, the Salt 101
website is over a year old..why all the interest now?

Byzas said...

I was extremely disappointed to learn that Alton Brown works for Cargill, which is one of the most sinister companies around, in my opinion. Cargill is the major processor of unhealthy foods in this country. Their factories look like a chemical plant rather than a place that deals with food products.

Thumbs down on Mr. Brown. You are known by the people you associate with.

Hilary said...

I was saddened to see that he is working for Cargill. I do watch and love his show but unfortunately the majority of people in the US do not watch the show and do not understand what he is getting at. I do believe there does need to be regulation as the huge part of the country, the segment that is overweight, with heart issues, and malnourished, are unable to afford, have access, or are unable to make REAL FOOD. These populations often use toaster ovens and hot plates to prepare food and are only able to get their food from the high-priced corner market as grocery stores are often few and far between in lower income areas. I do think there needs to be education and willingness on both sides-the food producers more open to education and being straightforward on labels as well as a culture with the public of learning how to read labels and have more access to the fresh fruits and vegetables that are disappearing from many dinner tables and lunch bags across the country.

Anonymous said...

Coming from the weight management and health sector - regulation won't do it. Education might. Low income communities do have severe challenges in getting fresh, affordable, foods. But the main problem in the United States is that we LIKE the taste of fat, salt and sugar and we LIKE convenience and we DON'T LIKE any form of self-deprivation. What could be more convenient than a fresh apple, good bread, good cheese, good salami? Cheap, buy it once a week, eat many meals. But it doesn't hit our taste criteria so we go for "convenient" drive by or frozen meals. It is not the producer's fault, it is a matter of public choice.

Zachary said...

I think that the issue really is that having AB act as a shill for ANYTHING diminishes his "brand".

The article does go a long way into saying that SOME salt is required to maintain edibility, which I'm sure that most everyone agrees with. The shame is that the article cherry-picked that one sentence out of what was a considerably more balanced presentation.

Chip Stewart said...

After watching and enjoying Alton for years, I'm saddened to see him pitching for Cargill - a company that has made billions from American's love of processed foods spiked with high fructose corn syrup, processed fats, and tons of salt. They've literally prospered as a result of Americans' expanding waistlines and atrocious eating habits. It's ironic that his message about eating well with freshly prepared foods is now called into question every time he advocates something. Every time he salts something on the show now, I'll hear a little "ca-ching" go off in my mind. When he uses sugar, I'll wonder if Domino is paying him.