Around New Year, I opened a pot of Rachel's Organic Rhubarb yoghurt. I was just about to tuck into it, when I noticed something on the top of it. I fished it out and ran it under the tap. It clearly wasn't the normal yoghurty goodness I was expecting!
I sent the offending article to Rachel's. They gave an interim response in a couple of weeks, but then took until the 6th March to properly respond (and hand over £10 of vouchers). Read on for the details, but do you think a three month response is adequate? I mean, what if there was some problem that would suggest the issue wasn't related to a single pot?
When I first fished the item out of the yogurt, it smelled really bad, and in my (uneducated) opinion, it looked like the fabric bit of a round plaster (complete with manky mark in the middle).
Rachel's sent the item to a laboratory for testing (South Wales Food Laboratory Ltd). Their report says it's made of something cellular, so is organic, and they even suggest it is derived from rhubarb.
As regular readers know, "I'm not one to gossip", but is it possible I was right, and Rachel's substituted the plaster for some by-product so that it'd pass the lab tests? I dunno, I just wish I'd kept half of it.
So the moral of the story folks is: If you find something in a food product you don't think should be there, keep some of it but tell the manufacturer.
I've been a Rachel's customer for a number of years, and have enjoyed their products a lot. They're all organic, they're all sourced sensibly, and they seem to have a desire "to the nice" (like when they did the 'cows for Africa' appeal). However, I have to say I feel unsatisfied by this. I've agonised over even blogging it, because this may be construed as 'bad press', and frankly, we need more companies like Rachel's Organic. But I still don't feel 100% about them, and haven't bought any of their products since (not now Yeo Valley and others are on the scene ;-)
What do you think? Am I overreacting? Or since this is 'food with priciple', should I stand on principle and avoid them? Is this even a 'principle' issue? Perhaps it's more of a 'yeuck' issue, I mean lots of people don't eat (insert name of fast-food restaurant here) because of the way their food is prepared and produced. I still don't know, but my (emotional?) response has been (so far) to avoid them.