If that $5 bottle of extra virgin olive oil seems too good to be true, it probably is. The U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention, a scientific nonprofit, discovered a 60 percent increase in food fraud this year. Pomegranate juice, olive oil, lemon juice, and tea are often diluted with cheaper products such as grape juice, water, and filters like lawn grass (gross!). Milk, honey, coffee, and seafood are also frequent culprits — but you already knew the unnamed “fish” in your favorite $3 taco was dodgy.
It’s hard to discern fake ingredients, of course, but there are a few tricks if you want to play food inspector. It’s suspicious if olive oil is in a dark bottle, and even more so if there’s no date listed for its harvest. But the general rule of thumb is that if the price is “too good to be true,” the company’s actually ripping you off. Fantastic! But don’t worry, experts are on it. The FDA recently issued alerts for mislabeled pomegranate juice and the “adulteration of honey.” Humans clearly can’t be trusted; this is why we only eat our honey in bear form. [Earlier, ABC]