Monday, August 15, 2011

Trader Joe's Greek Failure

Dr Desert Flower and I made our weekly pilgrimage to Trader Joe's to get dairy, wine, chocolate, and produce.  I saw that they had Greek Yogurt on sale and it was 20 cents cheaper the the organic yogurt I usually buy, so I unthinkingly plunked a handful of Honey Greek Yogurt containers in the cart, without reading the packaging.  I figured it would be good stuff, Trader Joe's isn't trying to poison me or feed me nasty additives..  are they?

Sunday, I was enjoying my first "Greek Style Nonfat Yogurt" (they didn't have any that were NOT 'non fat', or I would have opted for those), when I read the label:
"No significant difference has been shown between milk derived from cows treated with artificial hormones and those not treated with artificial hormones." (the curved surface doesn't want to clearly photograph, after 8 tries, this is the best I could get)

Ewwww!  Why put rBGH in your cows?  Other than to fatten them up, force them to make more milk, save a few pennies per gallon, and DRIVE AWAY health conscious, savvy consumers like me!  What I have figured out at Trader Joe's, is that if it does not say "Organic" on the packaging, then it likely has artificial growth hormones, unnecessary antibiotics, HFCS, or other unnatural things that are installed only to make it cheaper to deliver to customers.  Well, this customer is not interested in ingesting chemical compounds that I don't need or want, so I will continue to actively avoid such products, and warm others of lurking, insidious infiltrations such this rBGH in the yogurt.  At Fresh & Easy, they advertise that they don't add superfluous preservative and chemicals that I don't want, but I bet there's probably hidden rBGH & antibiotics in their dairy products as well, unless stated otherwise clearly on the packaging.  Going forward, I will be actively avoiding such infiltration, and read my dairy labels more clearly.


  1. Hi. It's been an year since you wrote this, so you may know the answer to this by now... but that Greek Yogurt from Trader Joes is in fact rBST free!!! I can see from the picture, the round circle to the left says "Milk from cows not treated with rBST". I know this because I read the same disclaimer on one of their cheese products and wanted to know the truth. Truth is that the discalimer: "No significat difference has been shown between milk derived from cows treated with artificial hormones and those who were not..." is actually required by the FDA after a complaint from Monsanto that the label "rBST Free" is misleading costumers to think that rBST milk is harmful.
    "All dairy products that do NOT contain added rBST must put this disclaimer on the packaging label. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Law requires the disclaimer."
    So yes, Trader Joes non organic yogurt must be safe then... right?

    1. WRONG "unknown". You MISSED the POINT entirely. It is NOT JUST rBST. It's tjhe high fructose corn syrup, the thickeners, and the added BS that doesn't NEED to be there. Chobani doesn't put it in. Fr4esh & Easy doesn't put it in. Fage doesn't put it in. Why the heck does Trader Joe's feel the need to put it in? Oh... yes.. "Greek Style" ... not "Greek Yogurt".

      Since my posting more than a year ago, I have consumed Fage yogurt, bought at Costco, for $4 a quart. You know what the ingredients are in Fage yogurt? Read THAT label "unknown" (yes Trader Joe's marketeers, get a Name!). Fage reads "milk, active cultures". Wow... who'd have thought that Greek yogurt could be so simple? The Greeks, they invented it.

      Just like your eggs that have been laid by chickens with their beaks lopped off, and your butter that's not organic or sustainable, I still actively avoid your "Greek Style" yogurt. Kudos on avoiding the rBST. No get rid of the rest of the garbage that doesn't need to be there, match Costco's prices, and I'll consider buying my yogurt from you when I move to California next month.

      Not Everything from Trader Joe's is bad. I love your wines (whites and red), your produce (when it is not rotten), your pollo asada, your Stevia, your chocolate covered espresso beans at to die for... but your dairy? Sorry, you get less than 1 happy cow out of four in most every sustainable food sourcing guide I've ever seen. Fail.


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