Ok, true confession, every now and then I don’t read the tags and that I bring home a special “deal” from the grocery store. We eat very clean and I believe it’s okay to relax a bit every now and then. I pulled out the Cappuccino Gelato (Hyvee Brand) in my freezer and completely appreciated a small bowl. It states right on the front of the carton that it is imported from Italy, so it’s exotic and going to be heavenly. I’d no intention of studying the tag and just needed to indulge. However, my husband immediately sits down and proceeds to read off the list.
So it has got that pleasure “new” Glucose Syrup ingredient that’s the made up name to hide High Fructose Corn Syrup, therefore that’s disappointing. The listing of things aren’t sounding terrible after that one. Until he gets to the coated coffee bean pralines that have the fixing Shellac. I think he’s pulling my leg but there it is correct on the tag. They did not even use one of those made up names they use for shellac such as “confectioner’s glaze” or “resinous glaze.” They simply went ahead and confessed that they put furniture polish in my dessert.
I am none too happy now. I am now imagining cans of shellac/polyurethane right off the hardware store being used to dip the toxic pralines in. My resourceful husband, who thinks he is being beneficial, does a fast google search on shellac in foods and it gets uglier from here. I found I’d simply had Italian Gelato using a side of bug blossom and squashed insect parts. Ok, they utilize the word excrement because that sounds so sophisticated but we understand what they mean. So today my husband and his friend are laughing hysterically at my expense and begin describing these poor children in some foreign land are forced to hold the fleas within the ice cream to get them to blossom in my ice cream.
Shellac is a coating or glaze derived from the tempered, resinous substance secreted by the lac insect. Shellac from the raw is called lac resin and can be produced mostly in Southeast Asia. It is projected that 300,000 lac insects have been killed for every 2 lbs of lac resin made. Approximately 25% of all non invasive, lac resin is composed of “insect debris” and other impurities based on the Shellac Export Promotion Council (Yeah that’s a real organization for appropriate regulation of insect poop).
If you’ve ever eaten candy that’s shiny, you’ve most definitely consumed the poop out of the Kerria lacca bug. Wonderful job but at least you know I understand how you feel.
However no worries folks because our friendly FDA provides Shellac a thumbs up using a GRAS status that means it is usually considered safe in foods. Confectioner’s glaze, the name frequently used for shellac by candy makers, is composed of approximately 35% shellac.
I know that you are wondering why ( like I was at this point) that candies are coated with shellac? The Vegetarian Resource Group conducted a research into this and came up with a partial listing besides our Beloved Halloween candy corn:
• Hershey’s Whopper’s Malted Milk Balls™
• Hershey’s Milk Duds™
• Nestle’s Raisinettes™
• Nestle’s Goober’s™
• Tootsie Roll Industry’s Junior Mints™ (NOT Tootsie Rolls)
• Tootsie Roll Industry’s Sugar Infants™
• Jelly Belly™ jelly beans, mint crèmes
• Godiva’s™ Dark Chocolate Almond Bar; Dark Chocolate Cherries; Milk Chocolate Cashews; White Chocolate Pearls; Milk Chocolate Pearls. (This is a partial listing; consult with Godiva about specific items.)
• Gertrude Hawk’s™ chocolate-covered nuts and nuts; cupcake sprinkles; decorative cake pieces
• Russell Stover’s™ jelly beans; NOT within their chocolate-covered carrot or mint patties
• Skittles™ and Starburst™: no shellac, however they do include gelatin (an animal-derived component)
Interesting side note: Shellac is also employed as a pharmaceutical glaze to coat capsules, particularly in time-released or delayed-action tablets as not surprisingly it stops the tablet from breaking down from the stomach!
I am sorry if I ruined anyone’s day.
Sandy Duncan is completing her Doctorate in Integrative Medicine, a health and health coach, Certified Neurofeedback expert and writer of AllNaturalHealthReviews.org. Read honest testimonials on current wellbeing and health products in addition to register for FREE giveaways.
The Vegetarian Resource Blog http://www.vrg.org/blog
The article Furniture Polish in My Gelato appeared on NaturalNewsBlogs.