Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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June 15, 2004
By: Kevin Drum

FRENCH FRIES AND KETCHUP....Back in Reagan's day ketchup was declared a vegetable. Today it's battered french fries:

The Frozen Potato Products Institute appealed to the USDA in 2000 to change its definition of fresh produce...to include batter-coated, frozen French fries, arguing that rolling potato slices in a starch coating, frying them and freezing them is the equivalent of waxing a cucumber or sweetening a strawberry.

...."I find it pretty outrageous, really," said [Chicago attorney Tim] Elliott, who argued that the Batter-Coating Rule is so vague that chocolate-covered cherries, packed in a candy box, would qualify as fresh fruit.

Seems to me it's Elliot who's being outrageous here. Why shouldn't a chocolate covered cherry count as fresh fruit?

Actually, what's odd about this little story isn't really the battering part which seems to be the key industry complaint but the potato part. Since when are potatoes a vegetable?

Kevin Drum 12:14 PM Permalink | Trackbacks

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