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Oreo Cookies: Fun For Kids or LETHAL WEAPONS?
May 12, 2003 10:49 AM   Subscribe

BanTransFats.com is the website of a non-profit corporation founded by Stephen Joseph, an attorney who is suing Nabisco to keep them from selling Oreo cookies to children. He believes that trans fats (partially hydrogenated oils) are so dangerous that children shouldn't eat them. If the suit is successful, I foresee a network of underground Oreo dealers getting kids hooked on Mini Oreos as a "gateway cookie", hoping they'll move on to the harder DoubleStufs.
posted by mr_crash_davis (48 comments total)

 
No need for a black market. Whole Foods sells Oreo knockoffs where the "doublestuf" is made with tons of sugar + olive oil, rather than tons of sugar + trans fats. Quite tasty and almost good for you, if you can keep to eating just 4-5 at a sitting. (fat chance!)
posted by BentPenguin at 10:55 AM on May 12, 2003


fat transexuals are people too!
posted by quonsar at 11:05 AM on May 12, 2003


We are very concerned that the Federal Government announced on May 8, 2003 that it will not force companies to produce healthier food.

We have sued Kraft/Nabisco, because it is targeting its marketing of Oreo Cookies to young children... This is the first anti-trans fat lawsuit ever filed by anyone

Incidentally, there are several "Oreo" alternatives that have no trans fat. Newman's "O" cookies contain no trans fat and taste just as good as Kraft/Nabisco Oreo Cookies. An Oreo doesn't need trans fat to taste great.

It would seem to me that the free market is working. A "healthier" alternative is available. But why worry about the market when you can sue?
posted by trharlan at 11:07 AM on May 12, 2003


It would seem to me that the free market is working. A "healthier" alternative is available. But why worry about the market when you can sue?

Yes, but stupid people like me continue to buy the non-healthy version. People like me need to be stopped -- our ability to chose must be taken away! We are nothing but a menace to ourselves. With any luck, eventually we'll simply be hooked up to nutrituous IVs that we can enjoy in the safety and comfort of our padded homes. Man, I wish Stephen Joseph could run my life.
posted by pardonyou? at 11:16 AM on May 12, 2003


The issue remains that most people don't know that Trans fats are so unhealthy, almost all foods made with fats use them and food manufacturers have no dity to even disclose the degree of trans fats in their products.

And the FDA is down with that. Thats the reason(s) for the lawsuit, and most all Prod Liability Torts.
posted by BentPenguin at 11:20 AM on May 12, 2003


Yeah let children forage for natural foods in the wild!
posted by MrLint at 11:22 AM on May 12, 2003


I think the lawsuit is a bit extreme, but it certainly got my attention, and I knew nothing about trans fats.
posted by agregoli at 11:40 AM on May 12, 2003


If it takes a lawsuit or two to get the attention of the big food conglomerates then so be it, the truth is I don't see another way to goad them into action - it seems to me that legislation is actually less likely to work due to the special interest lobbies. The incidence of diabetes in children is threatening to reach epidemic proportions in the US. The average Mom probably doesn't know that those Newman's Oreo substitutes are actually substantially healthier for her kids, what she knows is they cost $1 more and have less cookies. Maybe if the evening news covers the lawsuits, the word will filter out.
posted by Tempus67 at 11:40 AM on May 12, 2003


Can't you just scrape the white goop out of the cookie? It tastes nasty as far as I am concerned.
posted by konolia at 11:44 AM on May 12, 2003


Can't you just scrape the white goop out of the cookie? It tastes nasty as far as I am concerned.

? What is the point of buying sandwich cookies if you take out the filling? Those aren't sandwiches, they're, they're...bread, I guess.

(Okay, conceivably some members of a household might like sandwich cookies and some might like bread cookies or just a big plate of Kreme Philling non-cookies, but still...)
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:48 AM on May 12, 2003


And don't forget Hydrox (now called droxies apparently) started all this evil in the first place. OREOS ARE A KNOCK-OFF.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:54 AM on May 12, 2003


my anguish is real: Nutella is full of transfat. :- 0
posted by serafinapekkala at 12:03 PM on May 12, 2003


konolia says: Can't you just scrape the white goop out of the cookie? It tastes nasty as far as I am concerned.

You'll be thrilled to know that the excellent Paul Newman brand is now selling the chocolate wafers from their Newman-O's without the filling. (Of course, they're still selling the sandwich cookies.)
posted by e.e. coli at 12:13 PM on May 12, 2003


And the FDA is down with that. Thats the reason(s) for the lawsuit, and most all Prod Liability Torts.

The idea, then, is that since we can't depend on the legislators or their bureaucracies to outlaw the manufacture of these goods, we can borrow a vague and subjective standard of "negligence" or somesuch to sue corporate America into submission?

I think I got it.
posted by trharlan at 12:23 PM on May 12, 2003


I just read that site and I have one thing to say.

I'll boil the tar the rest of you start plucking. Or even better let's boil some marshmallow fluff and roll this asshole in Oreo crumbs.

Ban Oreos. Fucking communist.
posted by jonmc at 12:43 PM on May 12, 2003


Mr Crash, as it's your post. Will this post stop you from buying Oreo's, or handing them out to the kids, yours included?

Thought it was the oil from palm & cotton seeds that made these bad, not the crisco lard of fat that the middle looks like which is unhealthy too.
posted by thomcatspike at 12:57 PM on May 12, 2003


Serafina, I feel your pain. A world without Nutella is a sad place indeed. *cries*
posted by widdershins at 12:59 PM on May 12, 2003


The larger question, I think, is why do Americans, for the most part, eat crap?
posted by goethean at 1:00 PM on May 12, 2003


"Mr Crash, as it's your post. Will this post stop you from buying Oreo's, or handing them out to the kids, yours included?"

Come on, these are my kids we're talking about. That means they've got a lot more to worry about than Oreos.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 1:04 PM on May 12, 2003


*Ahem*.

Which is worse for you, trans fat or refined sugar?

Please extrapolate. Thank you for your sport.
posted by kablam at 1:11 PM on May 12, 2003


What! Oreo cookies are bad for you and Nabisco knows it? I wouldn't expect an Altria company to knowingly market unhealthy products.
posted by toddst at 1:12 PM on May 12, 2003


If you have a Trader Joe's near you, go buy and consume a box of Joe-Joe's. Yummy, chocolate instead of vanilla filling, no hydrogenated fats, just $1.99, and vegan to boot.
posted by gluechunk at 1:15 PM on May 12, 2003


The larger question, I think, is why do Americans, for the most part, eat crap?

goethean, I'll guess laziness;...don't care;...there is profit to be made selling crap;...but in the end it tastes good. Why is all the food sold these days full of sugar? Hide the crap taste in the food is my guess now. Or have we sweeten our taste buds too.

Come on, these are my kids we're talking about. That means they've got a lot more to worry about than Oreos.

thanks for the laugh...been a hater of these trans oil since a teen. Thought it was odd to consume cotton oil in your food and looking back it never fully stopped me from eating these products, yet I can't tell you the last time I bought an oreo.
posted by thomcatspike at 1:17 PM on May 12, 2003


allergies that lead to arthritis (From What's Wrong with Partially Hydrogenated Oils?)
posted by thomcatspike at 1:23 PM on May 12, 2003


my anguish is real: Nutella is full of transfat. :- 0

Say it ain't so, serafina!
posted by gramcracker at 1:26 PM on May 12, 2003


corporations. they're a lot more harmful than we thought.
posted by quonsar at 1:30 PM on May 12, 2003


Several of you seem to be going over to the dark side of the force here.

Come on, these are OREOS!! Dammit! Next they'll come for the Twinkies and then it's all over...

They keep your milk from gettin' lonely, for crying out loud. Won't someone please think of the milk???
posted by jonmc at 1:37 PM on May 12, 2003


They keep your milk from gettin' lonely, for crying out loud. Won't someone please think of the milk???

Milk? Sounds like yer only drinkin' th' Kool-Aid there Jonmc...
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:42 PM on May 12, 2003


Won't someone please think of the milk???


bovine udder squeezin's go great with partially solidified lipid cookies.
posted by quonsar at 1:45 PM on May 12, 2003


A dozen or more years ago I stopped eating meat and there was a funky period where I was aware of meat/animal smells to an amazing degree; walking past a shoe/leather store in a mall nearly induced queasiness.

One time I was in a friend's apartment when he opened a Tupperware container of Oreos. I could smell the lard in them from across the entire large room. It was really remarkable.

Not long after, mini Oreos appeared, and those were the first Oreos I knew of that were made without animal shortening. Apparently they were used as the test bed for a broader roll out of the reformulated cookies without lard.

So it looks like they traded lard for trans fats. great.
posted by NortonDC at 1:45 PM on May 12, 2003


Yes it's true, once you stop eating all that crap the smell of it will make you puke in your milk.
posted by oh posey at 1:48 PM on May 12, 2003


Yes it's true, once you stop eating all that crap the smell of it will make you puke in your milk.

Only a problem for those of you who drink milk.
posted by the.omega.concern at 2:11 PM on May 12, 2003


This one made me smile. I worked for what ended up as RJR Nabisco for thirteen years ending in 1992 -- what some of us call the "Barbarians at the Gates" years. Toward the end of my tenure there, as Director of Industrial Engineering for one of the division, I attended an executive presentation of market analyses and plans for what was then the four major divisions...Nabisco Foods (primarily the cookie and cracker folks), Planters/LifeSavers (nuts and candy), Domestic RJ Reynolds Tobacco, and International Tobacco.

The two food divisions and the international tobacco guys featured some of their major TV commercials at the time. We at PLS had just launched Gummy Savers and the quickly forgotten Life-Savers Holes products and Nabisco was "pushing" Teddy-Grahams, the latter of which had commercials aiming the cute little bear-shaped crackers at kids. Obviously, the domestic tobacco guys had to settle for print and sports-based ads featuring Joe Camel and Winston Cup Racing, while moaning about losing market share to Marlboro at Philip Morris.

During the Q&A session, one of my peers from the tobacco side of the house posed a question to the Nabisco Pres..."My wife and I enjoy products like Teddy Grahams. How come you don't advertise to adults as well?"

At which point the Tobacco Pres got up and interrupted..."That's OK, John. They're allowed to market to kids."

...or so they thought, I guess, back in those more innocent days of yesteryear, before silliness like McDonalds/obesity lawsuits...

Like I said, this one made me smile...sadly, shaking my head. Next thing you know, Hummer owners are going to get upset about the low gas mileage they get....what?...oh, never mind.
posted by fpatrick at 2:21 PM on May 12, 2003


The anti-Oreoites hate freedom.
posted by drstrangelove at 2:33 PM on May 12, 2003


I dunno, though, I was always creeped out by the Oeroites.

You know the ones I mean, marching around the wicked witch's castle singin "O-re-o, OreO-o..."
posted by soyjoy at 2:42 PM on May 12, 2003


When Oreos are outlawed, only outlaws will have Oreos.
posted by blue mustard at 3:50 PM on May 12, 2003


"O-re-o, OreO-o..."

In drama class I was taught it was "o-lee-o, le-oh-le-oh"
posted by konolia at 5:12 PM on May 12, 2003


Headline from the year 2020:

SCIENTISTS: TRANSFATS CRUCIAL TO HEALTHY LIFE
posted by aaron at 5:40 PM on May 12, 2003


Why is all the food sold these days full of sugar?

Perhaps in Canada food is full of sugar. In the U.S. it is corn syrup all the way!
posted by srboisvert at 5:57 PM on May 12, 2003


Are the Newman cookies as fun as Oreos? By that, I mean "can adolescents chew them up, turn their backs and spit them out to approximate having diarrhea?"

I've never cared for the flavor of cocoa, but I was a fun kid to have at a picnic.
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:28 PM on May 12, 2003


Trans fats exist naturally in many animal foods but are not dangerous like the man-made ones in fact those trans fats are good for you. But mark my words the anti-meat lobby will jump on this opportunity and dispense propaganda saying trans-fats in meat are bad once this anti-trans-fat thing gets big.
posted by stbalbach at 6:45 PM on May 12, 2003


Dr. Weil has been talking about this for a long time. They're also in your Freedom Fries, your margarine, and probably your beer too.
posted by muckster at 7:30 PM on May 12, 2003


the transfatty it's ok to consume. (possibly NSFW)
posted by goddam at 7:34 PM on May 12, 2003


I'm eating, right this minute, Glucose, Syrup, Wheat Flour, Sugar, Modified Corn Starch, Salt, Citric Acid, Artificial Flavor, Mineral Oil, Carnauba Wax, Potassium Sorbate, Colored with FD&C Red #2 and Red #40...


What am I eating??














Did you guess Twizzlers? YUM.

The hell with Oreo's, I just don't care for them.

Lookit this too! Liquid and hydrogenated Soya Oil 80%....
It IS in my margarine!


That does it, I'm switching back to butter!

posted by alicesshoe at 11:08 PM on May 12, 2003


Sugar in and of itself is terrible. It is leading to mounting levels of obesity in children and an overwhelming number of diabetics.

Going off processed foods like Oreos and such is like converting to a new religion, in some cases. I've recently done this this year, when I started exercising about a month ago. My new years resolution was to give up Soda, and I've kept it. So far, with giving up these processed foods and over-sugared treats, and regular exercise, I've lost 15 pounds in the last month. I feel healthier, and better.

But then, you look at other people eating this junk, and you want to save them, because really, isn't this all just killing themselves with this junk? So you tell them what's inside those Oreos and Twinkies and Mountain Dew... if they want to join, let them. If not, let it be.

Sugar, Caffeine, they are drugs just like any other. I don't think they should be controlled for sale to certain age groups, but they should be required to label their products appropriately, and let parents decide whether they want little Timmy to blow up to the size of a balloon. I know my parents didn't, and now I am correcting that mistake.
posted by benjh at 6:39 AM on May 13, 2003


Carnuba Wax: Its a food additive! No, its a Car Wax! Wait, its Both!!!
posted by BentPenguin at 6:58 AM on May 13, 2003


We try to avoid trans-fats, and this post prompted me to take a survey of our cupboards. The only culprit? microwave popcorn. Newman's cookies may be OK - but his microwave pop has fats partially hydrogenated oils.
posted by sixdifferentways at 1:56 PM on May 13, 2003


I have not had an Oreo in years, but I am tempted by the new Oops Oreo (for posterity, that is a vanilla cookie, with a chocolate filling. Nothing new, I know). There may be something wrong with me.
posted by thirteen at 11:15 AM on May 14, 2003


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