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How natural is food in Poland?


polonius 54 | 420
1 Oct 2012  #1
I wonder if factory-made Polish food nowadays is any less chemicalised than what is sold in the West. Reading the labels on Polish products makes one's head stand on end. It may be convneiently hiddne beneath a flap of packaging material or in very tiny print, barely legible without a magnifying glass. Then you find words such as stabilizator, regulator kwasowości, emulgator, wzmacniacz smaku, aromat B239, dioforan disodowy, wodorowęglan amonu, wodortlenek sodu, substancje spulchniające, and all kinds of ethyl phenylglycidate, ferric sodium pyrophosphate, E 503, E 500 , E 40, etc. which don't ring a bell to anyone without a chemistry degree. There are also stealth descriptions such as nature-identical, NATURAL FRUIT FLAVOURS, cotnains Real Fruit Juice, or ALL NATURAL INGREDIENTS and NO PRESERVATIVES ADDED. This does not mean there are no harmful additives in the product. By using these words, the manufacturer hopes you'll think these are healthy, natural products and buy them. NEVER FORGET - THE FOOD INDUSTRY HAS ONLY ONE CONCERN: Maximum $$$$$, €€€€€, ₤₤₤₤₤, zł zł zł zł zł...

The FDA and similar instituions ion optehr countries test these ingredients individually and approves them. They do not test interaction of countless chemical additives we ingest in different foods each day that can cause cancer and other problems. Here is a useful link:

healthyeatingadvisor.com/food-additives.html
Appleby 1 | 25
1 Oct 2012  #2
E 503, E 500 , E 40

Not too difficult .../wiki/E_number
OP polonius 54 | 420
1 Oct 2012  #3
Yes, but what these things actually does and how they it interacts with other preservatives, flavour enhancers, clouring agents and other additives remains unknown. In fact the infuential food lobby has successfully pressured the FDA to relax soem of its requirements.

But my basic question remains: is Poland's factory-made food of Anno Domini 2012 any less chemicalised* and therefore superior to what we have in Germany, the UK, US, etc.?

*Anyone got a better equivalent for the Polish schemizowane?
Barney 14 | 1,469
1 Oct 2012  #4
Anyone got a better equivalent for the Polish schemizowane?

Adulturated?

It all depends on how much you trust the regulatory bodies and local agents to comply/enforce the regulations.

The scandal about industrial ethanol adulterating wine is a case in point, the salt in Sausages thing was not quite so bad
Wroclaw Boy
1 Oct 2012  #5
NEVER FORGET – THE FOOD INDUSTRY HAS ONLY ONE CONCERN: Maximum $$$$$, €€€€€, ₤₤₤₤₤, zł zł zł zł zł…

only the food industry??
OP polonius 54 | 420
1 Oct 2012  #6
Of course not only the food industry, but noithing is more crucial to human existence and health than food, so potentially harmful chemical short-cuts are more dangerous than poorer quality car upholstery.

Yes and no. Adulterated can mean a cheap filler or something than is not necessarily a chemical. Schemizować (to infuse with chemicals) is more precise. I suppose one could say 'chemcially adulterated' and then the wolf would feel fed and the sheep would be whole.
Barney 14 | 1,469
1 Oct 2012  #7
the wolf would feel fed and the sheep would be whole

Never heard that before but I like it
Wroclaw Boy
1 Oct 2012  #8
so potentially harmful chemical short-cuts are more dangerous than poorer quality car upholstery.

bad example, try patents within the pharmaceutical industry, they ONLY CARE ABOUT MONEY too.
OP polonius 54 | 420
1 Oct 2012  #9
It was meant tongue-in-cheek....a translation of 'Aby wilk był syty i owca cała' (but proverbs are often untranslatable). Maybe an equivalent might be: Have your cake and eat it.
Varsovian 92 | 634
1 Oct 2012  #10
Polish processed food is more "chemicalised" in terms of trans fatty acids than in western Europe. A study by Stender et al. appeared recently in BMJ Open showing that, in foods surveyed, TFAs decreased substantially in western Europe 2005-2009, while they remained 5 to 10 times higher in Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic.

So - avoid microwave popcorn, cakes and biscuits. Bake at home.
OP polonius 54 | 420
1 Oct 2012  #11
Thanks for that input. Teh average stiff has little choice in the matter. Unless you raise your own pigs and chickens on your own farm or działka and feedc them only the grain, maize, potatoes, etc. you yourself have raised without the benefit of pesticides and chemical fertiliser. But even farmers are tempted by the high yield promise of chemcial fertilisers.
Barney 14 | 1,469
1 Oct 2012  #12
It’s impossible to feed the world without using chemicals in agriculture. Traditional copper preparations often known as blue stone or Bordeaux mix used to prevent many airborne diseases most notable blight in Potatoes are in fact much worse for you than products produced by Dow agrichemicals. Blue stone is organic yet banned in the EU even for the hobby gardener. Traditional nicotine based insecticides are also incredibly bad for you even though they are organic.

Chemicals in food prolong shelf life and allow food to be moved without it perishing.

The vast majority of the ingredients or adulterations (chemicals) are neutral in their effect on the body. In fact they are common ingredients going by a fancy name.
Varsovian 92 | 634
1 Oct 2012  #13
But Barney, there are sensible limits. TFAs are generally bad news and should be minimised.
Melloj 2 | 4
1 Oct 2012  #14
Is there any organic movement in Poland as in the west? I have seen references to "ekologiczne" but I wonder if it is as closely regulated a term as "Organic" is in N. America?
kmclod - | 2
10 Dec 2012  #15
hi everyone,

can someone reccomend me a good polish dish that I can get everywhere so I can try it in my trip to krakow.

thanks a lot.
Marysienka 1 | 195
10 Dec 2012  #16
can someone reccomend me a good polish dish that I can get everywhere so I can try it in my trip to krakow.

Do you want organic / natural food like the tread title suggests, or just standard food?

I'd start with pierogi, as they are traditional, cheap and avaliable almost everywhere.

Also you'll see people selling "obwarzanki" and "oscypki" everywhere.
rybnik 18 | 1,462
10 Dec 2012  #17
can someone reccomend me a good polish dish that I can get everywhere so I can try it in my trip to krakow

-bigos (you can google it)
-kotlet schabowy (pork chops, more or less)
-placki ziemniaczne po Węgersku (potato pancakes covered in a paprikasz-like sauce)
hudsonhicks 21 | 346
10 Dec 2012  #18
I have tried some Polish food, and other food from E.Europe. It is nice however quite bland & uninspiring just like British food.
I much prefer some Italian, Indian or a Chinese any day of the week.
berni23 7 | 379
10 Dec 2012  #19
Italian, Indian or a Chinese

Isnt that the food of the filthy invaders?
hudsonhicks 21 | 346
10 Dec 2012  #20
No it's nice spicy exotic cuisine.

Beats pickled cabbage and tinned fish paste from the Polski Sklep any day :P
Marysienka 1 | 195
10 Dec 2012  #21
Beats pickled cabbage and tinned fish paste from the Polski Sklep any day :P

Home-made sour cabbage beats one from the bag, especially one that has to travel abroad.
Fresh pierogi beat frozen ones.

And while Italian is very popular here, Chinese and Indian are not. If you want to try other, not Polish food in Kraków I'd suggest Ukrainian, Jewish, there is also very popular Georgian franchise.
hudsonhicks 21 | 346
10 Dec 2012  #22
That maybe so, and being British i love to try new things.

The average Brit cooks food from all parts of the world 7 days of the week.
The average Pole is fiercly nationalistic about anything Polish to the extreme that they build Sleps on every street corner, and a lot of Poles shop exclusively at these little stores in the UK.
TommyG 1 | 361
10 Dec 2012  #23
The average Brit cooks food from all parts of the world 7 days of the week.

Does that include microwave meals and take-aways?

The average Pole is fiercly nationalistic about anything Polish to the extreme that they build Sleps on every street corner, and a lot of Poles shop exclusively at these little stores in the UK.

So, are you saying that Polish food is natural or not?
Marysienka 1 | 195
10 Dec 2012  #24
Ok Are we talking about:
how natural Polish food on average is?
How natural Polish food imported to Uk is?
What meals we reccomend in Kraków, tahat are widely avaliable, and typically Polish?

I have an opinion about a quality of food, and could to some extend recommend some meals in Kraków but have no idea about quality of food in Polish shops.

All I know is that frozen meals or microwave ready are always worse than real thing, and it doesn't matter if it's Indian, Italian, Chinese or Polish.
Rysavy 10 | 308
11 Dec 2012  #25
wonder if factory-made Polish food nowadays is any less chemicalised than what is sold in the West

Hmmm..I think key term is "factory made".

With so many special diets and food allergies in the house; I try to keep my packaged items minimal..though I do get microwave popcorn because I am so fail at popping natural ...

All that mention of pickled.. cabbage... and fish made me hungry. I don't mind exciting counterpoit now and then but I mostly prepare meals that are fresh, simple, hearty, quick to prepare & plain enough for any family member to eat.

I have to really search to find proper cured foods that use salts and not nitrate/nitrites. only thing I like more than pickles is sausages.

When (if..plan is 'when') my love decides to return us to Poland later; he will have to arrange a gym membership for me or shall become a cow! real chocolates available easier and all the sausages of Poland and Germany, ..*faints* and Pickles..pickled cabbage, cucumber, fish! (I make my own pirohy now)


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