First the Kellogg Company announced it would introduce nutritional standards for its cereals. Then, last week, Tyson Foods announced it would cease treating its birds with antibiotics.
"We have taken this significant step at this time because you have told us it is important to you and your family," wrote Tyson chief Richard Bond in an open letter announcing the move and praising the company's "leadership role." "Tyson led the poultry industry in 2004 by becoming one of the first companies to begin removing added trans fats from its poultry products. In 2006, Tyson converted its packages of fresh chicken to 100% All Natural), which means it has no artificial ingredients and is minimally processed."
No doubt this is good news. But really, once you've removed the added trans fats and have converted (and gone to the trouble of trademarking) your packages of fresh chicken to 100% All Natural, what more is there to do?
Before Tyson gives us the antibiotic slip, though, I just couldn't deny myself one last taste of amoxicillin-laced Tyson Fully Cooked Fajita Chicken Breast Strips.
Fresh out of the bag, a Tyson Fully Cooked Fajita Chicken Breast Strip presents as a soft and somewhat sticky substance, only possibly of the poultry persuasion. Once frying in the pan, though, these Fajita Chicken Breast Strips perk up. That added caramel color isn't wasted, as the grill marks seem to have more visual pop than they did in the bag.
What's more, Tyson has flavored its fully cooked Fajita Chicken Breast Strips with generous helpings of garlic powder and corn-syrup solids, and as the breast bits spit and sizzle, they fill the room with a chickeny aroma, or at least with the aroma of Tyson fully cooked Fajita Chicken Breast Strips — which, as far as I can tell, smells a lot like chicken.
Thing is, I'm so inured to the flavor of Tyson chicken that I can't say for certain whether these watery, overweight and overseasoned breast strips I've placed on a corn tortilla really do taste like chicken, or whether they taste like Tyson's approximation of chicken. For that matter, I even have to wonder if they're one and the same.
So, yes, let's applaud Tyson for going antibiotic free — so long as they don't go messing with my chicken.
Seen a foodstuff you're too timid to try? Malcolm will eat it! E-mail particulars to email@example.com