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Where did all the taste go?


Where did all the taste go?

We just got up from the table after a late breakfast and something dawned on me. Where did the taste go in most commercial food products? Recently I bemoaned the lack of taste in high production commercial cheeses that tastes more of plastic than of milk products, but why is this happening with most mass-market food products? I know that according to modern corporate practices and the search for the holy bottom line, large corporations tend to homogenize their products and go for the least common denominator, but is there a universal ingredient called “Flavor” that is so expensive in the future market that most corporations shy away from using it in their products?

This morning we opened a new package of margarine, as well as new packages of “Spreadable” cream cheese and peanut butter. All were supposedly “New And Improved” and were definitely more “Spreadable’ than older formulations, but all were lacking taste. In the quest for “Spreadability” the core of the product flavor was forgotten. The margarine was bland and tasted of nothing, the cream cheese could have been bland thick cream as there was no hint of the slight sourness that is normally associated with the product, and you would have been confronted with a difficult task in trying to decide what was put in your mouth if you had tasted the peanut butter blind. The peanut taste was so light that you had to double the normal amount used to get any hint of it.

Maybe that’s what they are trying to make happen… All of those products were not “Light” versions of the regular brand, so that was not the problem. I looked into it a bit and found out that all the brands we had opened this morning were brands from the same mega-food conglomerate, so this might be a problem that is more specific to them, but I have noticed the trend in recent years in a variety of other brands. Has anybody out there found the same thing recently? Come on big food conglomerates; let’s put the taste back in your products…

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