We’ve all got a friend so fussy about food it drives you mad. You learn to shut out their gripes about a dish that tastes fine to you. So when my friend complained that herbs ‘aren’t what they used to be’, I switched off.
Well it seems I should be eating humble pie. A new study revealed exclusively to Which? has found that oregano isn’t always oregano.
In fact, nearly a quarter of the samples of oregano tested contained other ingredients, most commonly olive and myrtle leaves, which were found to make up 30% to 70% of the product.
So in other words, in some cases less than a third of the product bought was actually oregano.
The trouble is it’s impossible for any shopper to tell, without the help of scientists, what herbs they’re actually buying. We think it’s unacceptable that you don’t know what you’re adding to your food.
So we want retailers, producers and enforcement officers need to step up checks to stamp out this latest example of food fraud.
Fake oregano just the latest food fraud
Sadly, this is just the latest product to add to the growing aisle of fraudulent food.
Last year, we found that 40% of the lamb takeaways we tested contained other meat, and one in six of the fish we bought from chip shops turned out not to be what we’d ordered.
In the wake of the horsemeat scandal, the Government tackled this fraud head on and set up the Food Crime Unit.
Now it’s time to see the Food Standards Agency putting this crime unit to good use so we can know what we’re putting on our pizzas or in our salads, without the need for a CSI investigation on the contents of our kitchen cupboards.
Are you confident that the food you buy is genuine? Do you think enough is being done to stamp out food fraud?