Each year, I send an April Fools Day joke to
the readers of the NOTMILK column. Each year,
I get some very angry people, and generate
a lot of laughs. Who knows what I will think
up for pril 1, 2003? Here are links to the past
APRIL FOOLS 2000 FDA RECALLS POSILAC
APRIL FOOLS 2001
This will be my last EMAIL message to you.
I am giving up the NOTMILK campaign. A very generous offer
has been made to me for the rights to the NOTMILK site, and
I've decided to accept.
This past weekend I spoke before a few hundred people in
Vancouver, B.C. I spent eleven hours in airports and flying
home. I found myself waiting for a plane while on layover
in Toronto. There was a Kentucky Fried Chicken stand next
to a Ben & Jerry's ice cream booth.
Confession is good for the soul. The smell of that chicken
was irresistable. Like one of Pavlov's dogs, the odor of
fried chicken flesh triggered my salivary glands and before
I could control myself, I accepted a free sample.
Damn, that was delicious. The hell with the animals, I
thought. Seven dollars later, I had devoured a four piece
Thirsty? Damned right! I looked around. The airport was
nearly deserted. Nobody would be witness to my fall from
I walked up to the counter.
"Black and white shake, please."
It was delicious.
So you see? I cannot in good conscience continue my
campaign. I am giving up the NOTMILK movement, and have
sold out to a very high bidder.
I wish you all the best.
Happy belated April Fool's Day!
APRIL FOOLS 2002 Silk Reforms
WILL WONDERS NEVER CEASE?
On Sunday (3/31/2002), White Wave, the
manufacturer of SILK soymilk and SILK
chocolate soymilk issued a press release
on the P.R. newswire announcing changes to
their best-selling soymilk formulas.
SILK'S Mission Statement:
"To creatively integrate healthy, natural
soyfoods into the American diet."
SILK'S president and founder, Steve Demos, said,
"We're interested in promoting foods the
world is better off with, not without."
The press release contained a surprise announcement.
Based upon new research, future SILK products will
no longer contain carrogeenen or artificial flavors.
"We pride ourselves in producing the healthiest
soymilk product in America, using safe organic
ingredients for our discriminating consumers. It
has come to our attention that carrageenan may
not be safe, so we've decided to replace
carrageenan with organic agar-agar."
Demos recently opened his new state-of-the-art
processing plant, where SILK will control all
phases of the manufacturing process of their
soymilk, from grinding the beans to bottling
Demos has also exercised his option to buy back
the shares of White Wave stock that he sold to
America's largest dairy processor, Dean Foods, in
1998. Demos now controls 100% of his original
Demos also took the opportunity to comment about
rumors that the cocoa in SILK chocolate milk is
grown in nations in which slavery is legal.
"We will never knowingly purchase chocolate from
any nation in which children are kidnapped and live
in slavery. Ever. That would be unconscionable."
HOW SILK SOYMILK IS MADE
Soybeans are added to a vat of water just as you
might soak beans overnight to make them softer
and easier to cook. The beans are then ground and
added to steel drums in which water is added to form
a paste. This process of pulverization separates the fats,
proteins, and carbohydrates into a product that SILK
refers to as "soy base." The soy base is shipped to a
dairy processing factory in tanker trucks. Each truck
contains 24,000 quarts of soy base. The soy base is
unloaded into another vat where it is blended with water,
artificial flavors (which SILK calls natural), and other
ingredients (don't ask, they will not tell you).
In order to kill the microscopic organisms and bacteria
that have matured during this long grinding, storing, and
shipping process, the entire product is then pasteurized.
This kills the molds, yeasts, and bacteria. After heat
treatment, SILK is then piped into holding tanks and
filled into cartons. From start to finish, the SILK milk
can take between two days and one week to reach your
Most of today's column is not true.
HOW SILK SOYMILK IS MADE: That part is true.
SILK still refuses to condemn slavery. All it would
take Steve Demos to do is pledge to not buy chocolate
from the Ivory Coast, where children are kidnapped and
enslaved. His refusal to do so is unfortunate.
SILK still continues to process their soymilk
with dairy manufacturers, and marks each carton of
soymilk with the tiniest letters, DE (dairy equipment).
SILK has not purchased back their stock from Dean
Foods, and is in bed with the dairy industry,
relying upon the milk industry for distribution
and valuable supermarket slotting space.
SILK has not changed their formula, opting to
continue to use carrageenan, despite evidence
that this substance that is removed from seaweed
with powerful alkali chemicals may be hazardous
to human health. Dr. Andrew Weil recently warned
his readers about the dangers of carrageenan.
"Carrageenan can cause ulcerations and
cancers of the gastrointestinal tract."
SILK still does not recognize your right as a consumer
to know what you are drinking. While most companies
list all ingredients on their packaging, SILK refuses
to list their "natural" secret flavors.
SILK is one very bad April Fool's joke. If you
continue to drink their soymilk, the joke is on you.
Robert Cohen author of:
Executive Director (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dairy Education Board
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