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A little surprise in your PB&J

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By Sofia Donascimento

(Leonardo Pineda)

By Sofia Donascimento

Imagine savoring a peanut butter sandwich only to be told that it contains rat feces. It is outrageous how people have become sick from eating Peter Pan and Wal-Mart’s Great Value brand peanut butter.

How ironic that one of the brands is Great Value. Maybe it’s just me, but getting a bacterial disease is not something I value. The other brand, Peter Pan, has nothing magical about it, unless the person with salmonella is left in a sort of trance from all the vomiting, followed by the dehydration and fever.

By now you probably are scared about eating peanut butter. As if getting sick wasn’t enough, you’ll need to live knowing that you ate rat feces. You may think you’re eating the peanut butter you bought, but in reality you’re eating a sort of peanut poop.

Not to worry, if you ate some of the Great Value or Peter Pan peanut butter, Wal-Mart will gladly give you a refund. And if you unfortunately contracted the disease, at least you can buy a bottle of water to help with the dehydration.

I understand that Wal-Mart has a bad reputation. First the sweatshops and now the contaminated peanut butter. Maybe if the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had fewer than 12 branches then the problem would be already solved.

The endless bureaucracy in the FDA decreases its efficiency and consequently harms our nation. When the salmonella outbreak happened the FDA should have immediately resolved it.

The FDA’s job is to make sure the food is properly prepared. Since the contamination is coming from feces in the jars, I wouldn’t be surprised if the FDA decides to ignore the problem altogether. After all, the peanuts are being blanched, roasted and ground up at a very high temperature to kill the bacteria. Perhaps a new committee should be appointed to supervise the blanching, roasting and grounding of the containers to burn off all of the rat feces.

Given that the contamination is coming from the bacteria in the jars, we should be more apprehensive about the jars than the peanut butter itself. If we are not careful, we will soon hear about a jelly or mayonnaise salmonella outbreak.

Our society is extremely dependent on the industrialized goods and we can’t afford any catastrophes in the food industry. We need to be able to trust the companies that prepare our food. Food companies need to be concerned with the sanitation of a product from the harvesting of the peanut to the selling of peanut butter in the stores.

It should be FDA’s top interest to make sure that food companies do not get the entire nation sick.

Companies should make sure all of their goods are suitable for selling-even if it mean spending a little more on the production. It is unacceptable to jeopardize others’ health because of negligence.

Businesses need to be more concerned with the well-being of the consumer than the amount of revenue being made. They should invest the amount of money it takes to deliver a high-quality product. For starters, a high- quality product does not have rat feces in it. Thanks to the salmonella outbreak I will now have to think twice next time I see a product of “great value,” and hope that I won’t contract a disease.

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