Remember the last time you ate something that was “made with love”? Maybe it was your grandmother’s oatmeal raisin cookies, fresh from the oven, or some avocado toast from the good-natured hipster artisans down the street. Well, guess what? All of that was a bald-faced lie. There was, and has always been, exactly zero love in those cold-blooded pastries you so eagerly consumed. At least according to the FDA, which says “love” isn’t a real ingredient.
That’s right, just as you’ve always suspected, our government does not believe in love. On Tuesday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent a letter to a Massachusetts bakery and wholesaler warning it to stop making things with love. The Concord-based Nashoba Brook Bakery had listed “love” as an ingredient among the oats and sugar that usually goes into granola, according to Bloomberg, and this decision evidently did not sit well with the FDA.
“Your Nashoba Granola label lists ingredient ‘Love,'” reads the letter, which is posted on the FDA’s website. “Ingredients required to be declared on the label or labeling of food must be listed by their common or usual name [21 CFR 101.4(a)(1). ‘Love’ is not a common or usual name of an ingredient, and is considered to be intervening material because it is not part of the common or usual name of the ingredient.”
Ice cold, FDA. Nashoba’s CEO, John Gates, felt similarly, telling Bloomberg that the letter “felt so George Orwell.”
“I really like that we list ‘love’ in the granola,” he said in a telephone interview with the publication. “People ask us what makes it so good. It’s kind of nice that this artisan bakery can say there’s love in it and it puts a smile on people’s face. Situations like that where the government is telling you you can’t list ‘love’ as an ingredient, because it might be deceptive, just feels so silly.”
But the FDA said it had bigger fish to fry. In a statement emailed to Bloomberg, the agency said it wanted Nashoba to focus on correcting the “serious violations” it found in its inspection of the company’s facilities, which are mostly sanitation-related.
Love, the statement said, was “not among the agency’s top concerns.” Yeah, what else is new?