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  #1  
Old 14 December 2009, 12:40 AM
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Judge Silver dragees eliminated by lawsuit

Comment: I read a story about those little silver balls (dragees) we all
ate on our mom's cookies when we were kids. Supposedly some guy found out
they had silver in them and sued everyone from stocking them. Is this
true? Maybe you can add a complete story to your site.

http://articles.latimes.com/2005/dec...ne/tm-dragee51
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  #2  
Old 14 December 2009, 01:11 AM
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I never trusted those things. Seriously, silver on cookies and cakes? Not natural!
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  #3  
Old 14 December 2009, 01:16 AM
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You think that's bad, how unnatural are these?

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  #4  
Old 14 December 2009, 01:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ana Ng View Post
I never trusted those things. Seriously, silver on cookies and cakes? Not natural!
I am with Dr. Who on this on: Edible ball bearings? Brilliant!
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  #5  
Old 14 December 2009, 01:52 PM
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Embarrassing dragee admission:

Back in '86, my friend and I were bored an decided to bake cookies for the holidays. I pulled out a Sesame Street book I got when I was little, as it had different cookie recipes for each chapter. One recipe intrigued us, where you add "mystery filling" inside two cookies, like peanut butter, chocolate chips, stuff like that. I think you can figure out where this is heading.

The next day, we passed the treats around and one of the grown up was wondering why his teeth were in sudden agony. Yes, he had chomped down on a cookie stuffed with dragees. In my defense, I thought that since they were sugar, they would melt inside the cookie while baking, making some sort of cream filling. Please don't judge this innocent, cookie baking 15 year old. Judge her 14 year old friend who didn't stop her.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
You think that's bad, how unnatural are these?
~ Picture of chocolate coins ~

They are so unnatural that I force Ma to get me one every year for Christmas, specifically in the Gelt style (as opposed to the American/Euro coins version).
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  #6  
Old 14 December 2009, 01:59 PM
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Jolly Roger

Quote:
Originally Posted by TrishDaDish View Post
Embarrassing dragee admission
Reminds me of the bright idea I had not to long ago, to make skittles cookies. I used a basic white sugar cookie with skittles like one would put M&Ms in a cookie. Right out of the oven they were awesome. Ten minutes laster they were cookies with colorful little stones in them.
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  #7  
Old 14 December 2009, 02:21 PM
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It does appear that you can't buy them in California at least:

http://www.kitchenkrafts.com/product...cd2=1260804060

Quote:
(Sorry, due to CA regulations we are unable to ship dragees to California addresses.)
(eta) And this page confirms that silver is one of the ingredients:

Quote:
sugar, wheat starch, rice starch, wheat meal, arabic gum, gelatin, natural colors, gold (curoumin), silver (pure silver)
You apparently can't get the gold ones in California either.

(eta again) I can't find the law itself on the California Department of Food and Agriculture page though - would that be the right place to look? In Europe silver is E174, and there's a toxicology report from the WHO here, although mostly about silver compounds, which have risks not associated with pure silver.

Last edited by Richard W; 14 December 2009 at 02:39 PM.
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  #8  
Old 14 December 2009, 02:38 PM
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Alright, now you people have done it. Dragees bring back all my childhood christmas cookie making memories- those and the cinammon candies (perfect for reindeer noses), and the green and red sugar. Now I must.make.christmas.cookies.
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  #9  
Old 14 December 2009, 02:47 PM
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... I guess this is the nearest to a relevant law that I've found so far:

California
Health and Safety Code,

Division 104, Part 5
SHERMAN FOOD, DRUG, AND COSMETIC LAW
Effective January 1, 2009


(huge .pdf)

It goes into the definition of colour additives and so on, but doesn't contain the word "silver". I'm not sure if that's exactly where you'd expect to find the ban, if there is one, though. It does contain long lists of chemical ingredients that need to be declared in drugs.
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  #10  
Old 14 December 2009, 03:31 PM
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The Dragees my wife has lists silver as an ingredient. The bottle also says they are not edible.
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  #11  
Old 14 December 2009, 04:09 PM
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Oh come on, snopes, I almost *never* eat the wrappers...
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  #12  
Old 14 December 2009, 04:12 PM
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Wrappers ... what wrappers?
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  #13  
Old 14 December 2009, 04:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Wrappers ... what wrappers?
You don't have fillings, do you?

The horror of chomping down on an errant bit of foil is almost enough to keep me away from the chocolate coins. Almost.

I remember liking them a lot when I was a kid but now they seem to be made out of at least half the same kind of wax they used for those fake candy lips.
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  #14  
Old 14 December 2009, 08:13 PM
DaGuyWitBluGlasses DaGuyWitBluGlasses is offline
 
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The US is an exception,
they are Food Products elsewhere:

Quote:
http://www.fancyflours.com/dragees-silver-sticks.html
. These dragees are for decorative use in the USA only. In all other countries, including Canada, these silver sticks are approved for food use.
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  #15  
Old 14 December 2009, 08:54 PM
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It seems that California is an exception within the USA, too (in that, if they are actually banned, it's only in California - certainly the US places that sell them say that they can't ship to California). I mentioned that in an earlier post but I don't think I made it clear.

I was trying to find the actual Californian law that banned silver as a foodstuff, but couldn't. Without that, it's possible (although unlikely) that it's just a misconception on the part of the people selling - perhaps they're playing it safe, as DaGuyWitBluGlasses's website apparently is by applying that statement to the USA as a whole.
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  #16  
Old 15 December 2009, 04:19 AM
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I never knew those silver balls had a name. I remember as a kid they used to be on everything, but I haven't seen them in ages. I do recall wondering whether to eat them or not, so I used to swallow them whole. I think I was expecting some MrHankey/Liberace effect later on.
Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
You think that's bad, how unnatural are these?
They are the confectionery spawn of the devil.

Every pre-made Xmas lolly stocking has them in, but this is Australia, and it's hot. What is the life expectancy of a wafer thin piece of chocolate wrapped in metal on a 40 degree Celsius Xmas day? By the time the kids eat them, they seperate into two gold circular foils smothered with molten goop. It gets all over their hands and thus everything they touch, and their faces end up with sepia Joker smiles. Woe betide the person who treads on a discarded one and puts big chocky footprints through the house, or discovers the ubiquitous one on the car upholstery after a week in the sun.
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  #17  
Old 15 December 2009, 11:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SatansHobbit View Post
I never knew those silver balls had a name. I remember as a kid they used to be on everything, but I haven't seen them in ages. I do recall wondering whether to eat them or not, so I used to swallow them whole. I think I was expecting some MrHankey/Liberace effect later on.
Same here. Though I do recall looking for them recently for some baking project & wondering what happened to them.

I used to crunch them.
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  #18  
Old 02 January 2010, 03:28 PM
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Theme Icon Interesting Thread!

A very interesting thread. I searched online about this fellow who sued all these people - a former SDS radical turned environmental lawyer. He has done some good in the State of California, but the Silver Dragees thing, well....

I guess he has a point. They are either safe or they are not. Putting "not for human consumption" on the label as a way of skirting FDA food regulations is sort of cheating.

Suppose EVERYTHING in the grocery store had that label on it? "Hey, we don't have to comply with FDA regs, because we are claiming that this beefsteak is just for decoration, not food!"

That just ain't right. If it ain't food, then sell it at Michaels as a decoration for your scrapbook, not next to the cake decorations that are food.

But it is chilling to me that one person, filing a lawsuit, can create de facto law in California, and also get money from these various retailers.

I wonder how much he made on those lawsuits?

Maybe I missed my calling....
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  #19  
Old 02 January 2010, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertplattbell View Post
That just ain't right. If it ain't food, then sell it at Michaels as a decoration for your scrapbook, not next to the cake decorations that are food.
So you'd be in favor of banning the sale of birthday candles at grocery stores, then?
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  #20  
Old 03 January 2010, 01:26 AM
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Default Now be nice...

Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
So you'd be in favor of banning the sale of birthday candles at grocery stores, then?
No one would every consider birthday candles edible food, except maybe Mork from Ork. Being absurdist or trying to be funny?

When you place silver dragees in a Durkee's cake decorating display rack on the sales floor with all the other "edible" toppings, there is a degree of culpability.

Why not just make an edible FDA approve dragee?
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