JUST THINKING: What’s in my cereal?

Just Thinking | Julie Stafford

On the news this morning, they mentioned a “voluntary recall” of a certain brand and type of cereal because it may contain “flexible metal mesh fragments.” Say what? I just bought a box of that.

It just so happens this is one of our favorite kinds of cereal so I quickly checked the label for the specific information they provided and sure enough, our box is part of the recall. Apparently this issue was caused by a “faulty manufacturing part.”

The company’s website assures consumers the likelihood that any of this metal stuff made it into their product is low. But that doesn’t really make me feel better.

Recalls can forever affect your loyalty to a product. I don’t buy bean sprouts — which we used to love on sandwiches — anymore because there was a widespread outbreak of listeria a couple years ago.

I used to get my hair cut by the daughter of the guy who grew those Colorado cantaloupe that caused so many people to get sick last year. She assured me it was just a fluke, but I didn’t buy cantaloupe this year.

Flipping through some of the food disasters we’ve seen in recent years, it’s a wonder we trust what we buy. Rat meat sold in an outdoor market. An egg farmer trying to bribe a USDA inspector into approving unapproved eggs. A fast food chain using expired chicken.

If I thought about it enough, I’d probably turn into a paranoid shopper. I realize there are millions of foods sold each day that are just fine. But you know what they say — it only takes one.

Bad news for my kids is I probably won’t buy this favorite cereal for a long time — if ever. Good news is there are a few hundred other flavors to choose from.

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