/ Food & Drink

This week in comments – the truth about your food

Scientist holding up an apple

From what’s in your cereal to where your food really comes from, we’ve been asking for opinions on what you eat this week. Add a healthy dose of voting and poetry and you’ve got this week’s recipe for a good Convo.

Unhealthy breakfast cereals

Did our research into breakfast cereals surprise you? Lessismore has more reason than most to understand about the sugar content in our breakfasts:

‘I’ve spent a lot of time recently trying to find foods for a diabetic (not me). I find it unbelievable that there are all these breakfast cereals with so much sugar… and chocolate in them. There is little choice. Muesli often seems to have milk powder added as well.’

Watchdog not Lapdog – which dog will win your heart?

This week we revealed our five doggy finalists to be the face of our Watchdog not Lapdog campaign: Darcy, Jackson, Lupo, Milo and Unushka. Richard says he’ll be voting for Unushka:

‘Reminds me a little of Brutus my wonderful German Shepherd Dog. He was a superb watchdog – my neighbours loved him because his alertness and loud barking kept any casual night intruder away. And cold callers would retreat to the other side of the garden gate and leave. On lead he was a gentle lad – off lead completely obedient.’

Are you confused by creative food labels?

Did you realise that Oakham chicken doesn’t come from Oakham and Lochmuir salmon isn’t from Lochmuir? Kat did, and she has an example of her own:

‘One I like is ‘Himalayas Crystal Salt’ – a marketing term for Pakistan rock salt – doesn’t sound quite so ‘exclusive’ now does it?!’

Jon McColgan says he tries to ignore the marketing hype with this process:

‘1. Ask myself if a product has a fair price for what is being offered (ignoring all the three for two deals and other nonsense they use to sell more). 2 After tasting the food, would I buy it again. If I can say YES and YES then it goes onto my own “approved list”.’

Would regulating landlords improve the rental market?

After some disastrous rental experiences, Emily Brunwin asks if landlords should be regulated. Others, like Elir, have had similarly bad experiences:

‘We chose to invite the landlord round to inspect the flat after our end of term clean. Our idea was that if he wasn’t satisfied, we could address his concerns and clean again before we moved out. He actually complemented us on how well we had maintained the place. And what do you know, upon two weeks of leaving we were slapped with a cleaning bill of £1,000!’

Kev Braun thinks tenants’ protection should go even further than regulation:

‘On top of all of the very valid points you have raised, I believe that the landlord has a duty to make sure that their tenants are happy there. I had one housemate who was a control freak and made my life hell.

‘I raised my concerns with my landlord as I didn’t want to have to do a runner and lose my deposit (which, for the record he hadn’t put into a deposit protection scheme). The landlord did nothing. All in all I made complaints on four separate occasions before leaving without notice, thus losing my deposit.’

How do I love thy company poetry? Let me count the ways

This week, Nikki Whiteman flexed her creative muscles and wrote some poetry in response to the Energy Ombudsman’s anti-Valentine poem for the energy companies. Others joined the poetry party – even the Poetry Society penned a piece:

‘A love poem’s made for the object of love –
or ‘consumer’ in energy-company lore –
An expression of passion to heaven above
precisely because when the one you adore

‘doesn’t do what you want, doesn’t listen to you,
finding form for your feeling can make you feel better.
And this proves that a poem, well-placed, can get through
to the parts never reached by a boring old letter.’

But John Ward’s rhymes really won us over – and he is this week’s commenter of the week:

‘Watt we don’t want in our ohms
Is power giants’ pathetic poems;
Simple tariffs end in tiers.
Let the meter fit the bill,
Direct debit, dual fuel –
Haven’t had it straight for years.’

Comments have been edited due to length, so make sure to read them in full on their relevant Convos (by clicking on the red title link).

Steve says:
17 February 2012

Which occasionally shows its ignorance around percentages, averages etc. For example “claims about healthier aspects of some cereals (such as being low in fat) when they were high in sugar”.

Surely if the perentage of fat goes down then the percentage of fat will corrspondingly increase!

I think you may have missed the point – Some companies claim their product is healthy because it is low in fat – but totally ignore that the product is unhealthy because of its sugar content.

Don;t quite understand the last bit – surely it should be “if the percentage of fat goes down the percentage of fat will correspondingly reduce”

riverside says:
10 March 2012

gave up eating all of the prepared meals including cereals years ago. Now find myself seriously shocked at that price of this rubbish.