Written by Alison Bell
You may wonder what a bone broth company is doing make vegetable stock?
We took a look at the ingredients in some top vegetable bouillon products on the market, and were horrified at the ingredients. The list looked remarkably like the instructions for a chemistry experiment. So we thought it would be a good idea to release a product to fill the gap for our vegetarian and vegan friends!
The simplest rule when looking at the ingredients of a product is if you were to make this yourself, would you know where to find those ingredients in a supermarket or farmers market, and would you use them? When you use soybean oil instead of olive oil, high fructose corn syrup instead of honey, artificial flavours or yeast extract instead of herbs, it indicates that these "food" items have been made in a laboratory rather than from nature. Remembering also that ingredients are listed in order from highest quantity used, I am amazed that the first vegetable ingredient can be as low as number 8 in some products!!
Here are some examples of what we found. Please note just because a product is organic, doesn't mean it's good for you. The ingredients on the first picture below prove this!
This organic stock has yeast extract as the third ingredient. Let's rename that to something more obvious. Yeast extract = MSG. Plain and simple. It is a processed yeast product that is used as a food additive and flavouring. The term yeast extract is commonly used to avoid using putting the controversial label of MSG onto packaging. Whether MSG causes health issues is an ongoing debate and we know some people certainly have immediate adverse reactions. Independent research continues to show long term consequences however the industry insist this is not the case. One thing that is true is that MSG can be found in almost every instant product available today.
Lastly our third example. The 2nd ingredient is corn maltodextrin which is a widely used but little understood food additive, often used to thicken or fill products for very little cost. Several studies have linked this carbohydrate to the suppression of good gut bacteria, and with its glycemic index being higher than table sugar, it is generally one to avoid. Yeast extract is again included (aka MSG), and I am always a little dubious as to what exactly "natural vegetable flavors" are????
Given these were three are well known and commonly perceived as "healthy" vegetable stocks, it got me thinking as to why all these additional ingredients were required. And thus began my experiments into making a vegetable stock that has no hidden nasties, just pure organic ingredients along with salt as a natural preservative. We hope you enjoy it as much as we have enjoyed providing a real food option!
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