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Sometimes I question people who make out with their cars or women who didn’t know they were pregnant until a baby dropped out of the leg of their sweatpants. Every now and again I stumble across something that makes me say, “WTF, Food Manufacturers?” Today’s discovery I’m really pondering.

A co-worker brought this product to my attention.

Where to begin?

First, with my kind co-worker. Nope. Not touching this stuff.

Second, it’s vegetarian ham. That’s not entirely weird. I eat all sorts of vegetarian “meat” products. I’ve even had vegetarian ham. But look closely. That’s chicken flavored vegetarian ham. Is it still vegetarian? Are they using vegetarian chicken to flavor it up? Is this a thing? Do carnivores like to flavor up their meats with other meat? What is going on, Food Manufacturers?!

My co-worker tried to explain it by saying it was like “bacon flavored chocolate.” But it’s not. Bacon and chocolate are two totally different food groups. While I don’t get why you’d want to mess up your chocolate with bacon, I understand and appreciate food pairings. But meat flavored meat for fake meat is just not working for me.

The other thing I find off-putting about this product is its packaging. It’s a tube which to me implies it’s contents are meant to be squeezed out. Toothpaste, check. Makes total sense. Ketchup? Yep, I’m all for squeezing. Chicken flavored ham? Please no. What are you meant to squeeze it onto? Or is this chicken flavored vegetarian ham also trying to pass for sausage? I’m so confused.

Again, as a vegetarian I’m not always up on the carnivorous trends, but if someone could explain this to me, I’d be very grateful. In the meantime I’ll be hugging a bunny and eating a bowl of kale chips.

Shelly Mazzanoble

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