The idea of Paula Deen coming out with a line of specialty butters exclusively at Wal-Mart is a joke that writes itself. Except this isn't from The Onion.
The last thing Paula Deen was pushing was a diabetes medication. Or maybe now she lost a bit of weight, she's ready to put a few pounds back on.
Since these are finishing butters, the logic appears to be "less butter" but only putting it in a dish at the end. There are 5 varieties of the "finishing butter": Southern Grilling Butter, Lemon Dill Butter, European Style Butter, Sweet Citrus Zest Butter, and Garden Herb Butter.
Nothing wrong with adding herbs and spices to your butter. Chances are you could do a better and healthier job of adding ingredients than these products will have. And you don't even have to go to Wal-Mart.
Those who eat healthy wouldn't trust Deen even if she were hawking a healthy product. But you wonder if Deen's loyal fans would turn their back on her just because she got a little healthier. Oh well, nothing says "I'm sorry" more than a finishing butter.
Deen is also launching a line of tortilla chips and sugar free chocolates at Walmarts in the Southeast. Compared to Deen's vision of sugar-free chocolates, that butter is looking a little better.
You had to figure that the first DIY high-fructose corn syrup was going to be made a Brooklyn hipster. You were hoping (and so were we) that even a Brooklyn hipster would see that as being too ironic.
For her master's thesis at Parsons The New School for Design, Maya Weinstein created a chemistry kit that allows people to make "small-batch, artisanal, high-fructose corn syrup."
DIY HFCS. WTF?
No one yearns for the taste of high-fructose corn syrup, homemade or otherwise. I'm sure Weinstein's version is probably better for you than what you would find in processed food, and you can control the fructose level in a homemade version of high-fructose corn syrup.
If you look at her Web site, she seems fairly earnest in her efforts to sell you the opportunity. But Weinstein is literally selling a product that no one would want to buy, except for irony, which is plentiful in Brooklyn.
Weinstein also wants to someday sell you a DIY version of monosodium glutamate. Now with extra irony.
DIY MSG. WTF?
Whole Foods set up a store in Detroit's Midtown neighborhood. Good thing? Bad thing?
Detroit getting grocery stores is a good thing, even in a decent part of the city. Whole Foods is not a panacea for Detroit's ills, but a good sign is a good sign.
Honestly, Detroit needs a lot more Meijer's and Kroger stores — two regional chains that you can find plenty of outlets in the Detroit suburbs. The city also needs better transportation for those who can't afford the cars that made the city famous. And more jobs, manufacturing or otherwise.
Yes, Whole Foods has a reputation for high prices and that appears to clash with the perception of Detroit. But if a Whole Foods can convince other food outlets to set up shop in Michigan's largest city, then that is progress Detroit needs.