Do you enjoy free-range, grass-fed, boneless, skinless, additive-free, organic, all-natural, extra-virgin margarine? Or are you addicted to expeller-pressed, unrefined, unhomogenized steak? If so, stock up on these products now, as FDA regulations taking effect next month will make these, and many other, foods impossible to obtain (at least legally).
The new FDA regulations occur in response to “an inordinate and frivolous expansion of the use of descriptive adjectives in product information.” The freshly revised rules specify that no more than two adjectives (and at most one adverb) be used for every noun in lists of ingredients and all other food and beverage labeling.
While food-industry experts object that these requirements “restrict the creativity and free-expression of food-marketers,” which will “decrease consumer appreciation and lead to a decrease in food consumption with attendant negative consequences for the local and global economies,” Josiah Duncan, Regius Professor of Food Adjectives at the University of South Lambeth, heralds these latest emendations with excited and passionate enthusiasm:
These brand-new, substantially improved guidelines will both simplify food and drink labeling and also be a boon to eloquent and concise use of the English language in America. This will be of immense and lasting benefit to discerning and careful consumers. I cannot sufficiently applaud the intelligent and magnanimous spirit that led to these thoughtful and judicious modifications of the formerly lax and insufficient directives.
“Still Life,” by Giacomo Ceruti. Public domain.