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Unformatted text preview: tallow. A look at
the ingredients now used in the preparation of McDonald’s french fries suggests how the problem was solved. Toward the end of the list is a
seemingly innocuous, yet oddly mysterious phrase: “natural flavor”. That ingredient helps to explain not only why the fries taste so good, but
also why most fast food — indeed, most of the food Americans eat today — tastes the way it does.
Open your refrigerator, your freezer, your kitchen cupboards, and look at the labels on your food. You’ll find “natural flavor” or “artificial
flavor” in just about every list of ingredients. The similarities between these two broad categories of flavor are far more significant than their
differences. Both are man-made additives that give most p rocessed food most of its taste. The initial purchase of a food item may be driven
by its packaging or appearance, but subsequent purchases are determined mainly by its taste. About 90 percent of the money that Americans
spend on food is used to buy proce...
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- Spring '08