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Old 05 March 2007, 07:00 PM
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Do twinkies contain artificial of natrual vanilla? Are they ever manufactured in Mexico?

http://gourmetsleuth.com/vanilla.htm

"Artificial Vanilla Flavoring
U.S. manufactured artificial vanilla is produced from synthetic "vanillin", Lignin Vanillin, which is made from a by-product of the paper producing industry. This by product is chemically treated to mimic the flavor of vanilla. The product help take care of a ecological problem with paper producers and created an "affordable" vanilla flavoring for the public.

The other synthetic common in Mexican artificial flavorings is Ethyl Vanillin derived from coal tar. "

Actually I don't find this at all disturbing...Coal (and paper for that matter) are made up of formerly organic compounds, so it wouldn't surprise me if many of the byproducts of the processing of these items are technically edible if not tasty.

I remember a book out not to long ago, the name escapes me, discussing this common misunderstanding of chemicals, and the notion of "natural good" "Artificial bad" and More Chemicals = More Bad.

Some of the examples from the book that stick out in my memory included the fact that Natural Strawberry flavor had more chemicals than artificial strawberry flavor, and that artificial almond flavor was a dirivitive of peach pitts and contained arsenic.
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