Culture

From Rodent Hair To Poop, The FDA Legally Allows Factories To Have A Small Amount Of These In Your Food

If this is the first you’re hearing of this, you might want to just plan on skipping your next meal. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sets a legal minimum for the amount of “food defects” a consumer can reasonably come to expect from their food purchases. Growing up Latino, the bulk of your food probably came from Costco, where every apple is encased in plastic and the food feels pretty sterile. Never have we found a bug in anything from the holy grail of Costco.

No matter where you do your grocery shopping, often, you can’t even see the rodent hairs or disembodied insects in your food. But the FDA knows it’s there, and the agency is trying to keep your cafecito at a minimum of just 10 mg of animal poop per pound.

Along with a small dose of mierda, you’re also looking at 4% to 6% of your coffee beans being moldy or insect-infested.

@thetakeout / Twitter

Talk about a witches’ brew. Your cafecito brew in the morning is basically the same potion our ancestors made for their enemies. Café Mierda, que rico. It makes sense though. Coffee is grown in the humid, tropical countries of much of our people. That mold creates mycotoxins which are toxic chemicals, the most common of which in coffee is a powerful carcinogen. The second most common mycotoxin found in coffee is Ochratochin A, which can deplete dopamine and cause cell death in your brain. Some say that we’re exposed to small amounts of toxins no matter what we do, but others suggest listening to your body. We all react differently to different stimuli.

Worse still is that there might be up to an eyedropper full of blood and pus in that leche.

@SnellKat / Twitter

Cows that are used for dairy are kept forcibly impregnated their whole lives so that they can produce milk. Once they begin the very natural process of lactation, their calves are sent away, and they’re hooked up to metal milking machines. The irritation from those machines causes mastitis, which is an infection of the udder. That means that those machines are milking infectious pus along with the milk. According to the USDA, 16.5% of cows used for their milk are suffering from mastitis.

This is so common that the FDA legally allows up to 750 million pus cells in every liter of milk. That’s about an eyedropper full of pus. Cafe sin leche, por favor.

Insects might not perk up your spices, but they’re there anyway.

@Canoopsy / Twitter

Paprika is allowed to be comprised of up to 20% mold. Let’s face it. Latinos are more comfortable with mold than your average Becky. We just slice that moldy part off the bread and make toast like it’s a no-brainer. For some reason, when we learn the government is allowing us to eat mold without our consent, it feels gross. If you’re not grossed out yet, you should know your typical spice jar of paprika is likely to have 225 tiny limbs or heads of dismembered insects, and over 30 rodent hairs.

This all makes sense if you try to reconnect to our food system.

@ChefDLewis / Twitter

Access to food on a daily basis looks like walking down illuminated, refrigerated grocery aisles, and choosing between plastic wrapped chicken breast, or plastic-wrapped Beyond burgers. Root vegetables like carrots are being misted every twenty minutes and look so clean and fresh. When we remember where, or who, all these products come from, it’s easier to imagine why insects may have hopped a ride from the farm to to your plate. Produce is of the earth, and harvest season may be the buggiest season of the year, depending on the crop.

That said, food safety specialist Ben Chapmen told CNN that he looks at insects in your food “as a yuck factor versus a risk factor. Insect parts are gross, but they don’t lead to foodborne illnesses.” More dangerous for human health is when plastic, stone or metal ends up in a food harvest, which is why processed food goes under x-rays and metal detectors.

You can control the amount of feces and rodent hair in your food when you buy as fresh food as possible.

@asolitarypagan / Twitter

Instead of using a can of corn, buy fresh corn on the cob. You might just see the insects crawling out of the cob as you start to peel the corn, and rinse away all the mierda you can. Technically, the FDA is more concerned with regulating the amount of insect larvae in your cans of sweet corn. That said, 5% of corn husks used for tamales are expected to be moldy and insect-infested. Careful with your fresh tortillas though, because the FDA allows an average of one whole insect per quarter cup of cornmeal. Is it racism? We can’t say.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

This TikTok Hack Shows A Pretty Cool Way To Grow Your Own Avocados At Home

Fierce

This TikTok Hack Shows A Pretty Cool Way To Grow Your Own Avocados At Home

@BradCanning/ TikTok

As the pandemic continues to carry us into the infinite unknown the only thing that we can be certain of is that keeping ourselves entertained, busy, and happy is essential. Of course, any plant lover knows that one of the most simple pleasures in life is having some homegrown vegetables in the kitchen. If you’re quarantining and doing all that you can to avoid public spaces like grocery stores this truth goes double.

Recently, a TikTok user uploaded a quick tutorial on how to make your very own avocado plant using supplies you probably have around the house as well as that avocado seed you most definitely toss out way too often. We broke down the steps for you below and they’re pretty easy!

Check them out below.

Here’s what you’ll need

  • Avocado seed
  • Water 
  • Paper towels
  • Ziploc bags
  • A vase or glass

1. Once you’ve cut the avocado hold on to the seed

@BradCanning/ TikTok

As TikTok user @BradCanning points out save the seed! As you’re preparing your avocado for a feast, be sure to avoid cutting into the seed.

2. Remove the outer layer of the seed by peeling it off

@BradCanning/ TikTok

Run the seed underwater then dry it. Once it’s dried up, peel off the skin with your fingers to make sure the seed doesn’t go moldy.

3. Allow the seed to sprout and grow a root by wrapping it in a paper towel and putting it in a Ziplock bag

@BradCanning/ TikTok

After the seed has been in the bag for two to three weeks, it’s time to pull it out and crack it open.

4. Fill a jar with water and suspend the seed

@BradCanning/ TikTok

According to Canning’s TikTok “Put the root in water and it will start to sprout … be careful though, this is a total addiction.”

Make sure to place only the roots or half of the seed in water. To do this, Canning used a vase with an opening that fits around the diameter of the seed. Note: others often insert wooden pegs into the seed to suspend it above the water. The root will slowly grow into the water below which means you’ve got a healthy growing plant on your hands.

5. Once the plant gets to a good size pot it in soil.

@BradCanning/ TikTok

Once the plant gets to a good size you can pot it in soil or in a bigger vase to ensure that it keeps growing. According to SF Gate, “After that, the plant takes 10 to 15 years to grow large enough to fruit, which it only does in suitable growing conditions. In U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 through 12, it’s safe to grow avocado plants outside. In colder zones, they make attractive houseplants but are unlikely to bear fruit.”

For the full video check it out here.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Remember The Day You Got Your Period For The First Time?

Fierce

Remember The Day You Got Your Period For The First Time?

Chris Hondros / Getty

No matter how old you are, you’ll always remember what it was like to get your first period. Of course, we all have different experiences with them. For some, our first periods were kind of a bit traumatizing. For others, it was was one of the most empowering moments of our lives.

To celebrate our first periods, we asked FIERCE Latinas to share their experiences and the stories were both sweet and hilarious.

Check out some of the stories below!

This gift from god period.

“I got mine on Christmas when I was 12, and my aunt was like “it’s a gift from God!” – 444nates

This one that sparked tears.

“I was 11 and it was Valentine’s Day in sixth grade. I was wearing black pants but I was so scared to tell anyone so when I got home I tried to cover it up like nothing happened. The next morning when I woke up for school my sister was the one who noticed because there was blood on my shorts. She called my mom and my mom came home from work and cried because “I was a woman now” so then I started crying cause I was scared 😂 my mom let me stay home from school for the week and my dad told her she should stay with me so I’m comfortable.” – lichensnfronds

This one that came to church.

“I got mine during morning Sunday mass. I felt wet and I went to bathroom and when I looked down I was like, “oh god it’s happening awww man. I shouldn’t have made fun of yesenia for getting her’s last week.” – angiemhrndz

What is it with periods on holy days, seriously?

“Easter Sunday. 10 years old almost 11, I freaked out in the bathroom of the church.” – dearmelrose

This one that gives Remember the Alamo a different sentiment.

“It was Summertime and our parents always had different activities planned for us. This particular day, we were visiting The Alamo. I was 10 and right before leaving I made that last minute bathroom trip when I realized I got my period. I called my mom and she immediately gave me a pep talk & the stuff I needed, I already knew about it but was surprised. I was like “We’re STILL going to The Alamo?!” Needless to say “Remember The Alamo” has an entirely different meaning for me!!” – tish1972

This one that took some time to share with her mom.

“I was 16 when I got my period… and I was scared didn’t told my mom until late that day. I was using two chones meanwhile.” – tatiana.r92

And this one that came at a really bad time.

“I got mine on Father’s Day with my brother and dad at the movie theaters I went to the bathroom and didn’t know what to do because I had nothing with me and my dad knocked on the door and told me to hurry up and what was taking so long so I put a lot of paper and waited till I got home.” – _jessica_silva17

This one that traumatized.

“11 at home, I think!? I had an older sister and classes were they gave us free pads and educated us on the subject. Still traumatizing lol.” – k.cuzco

This one that came a bit early and at a hard time.

“I was a little over a month shy of 10 years old. My mom was in prison and I was living with my dad and his new wife. (Who 20+ years later is still not a mom to her own children so she def wasn’t tryin to be mine) My friend had stayed the night and we were just waking up. I was crying in the bathroom so she got my dad, who got his wife, who said “it’s okay, you’re fine. ” Then handed me a pad she received from the hospital after giving birth to my brother a week or so prior. When my mom called that day she started crying and apologizing for not being there for me.
I swore to my girls I’d be there for them always. When my almost 12 year old called me a few Saturday mornings ago from her dad’s house and let me know she had gotten hers, I jumped outta bed and went straight to her.
I can’t do anything about the way I grew up, I can only make sure my daughters have a better go of it.” – xicana_402

This one that made her think she was dying.

“11 and the bus ride home from school. I thought I was dying.” – reinders.v

“Started one morning that I had basketball practice before school in 8th grade. Mom couldn’t drive me so I had to walk myself to school, got in trouble for being late, and I remember wanting to cry cause I was both shook and pissed off for being punished by mother nature AND my coach.” – cynthia_a7

When a baby came the same day as her period.

“My mom had just given birth to my brother (I was 10) and I was at the hospital. My grandma ran out and said,”it happened! A baby and a period in the same day!” – ashleylynne92

This one that came with a super sweet gift.

“I was 9 & at the apple store bc my uncle was kind enough to buy me an ipod and i geniuenly thought i had peed myself or something and i told my mom but she got confused and told me to hold it till we got home. then i went to the bathroom when i got home and panicked so i told my mom and she had to just do a mini explanation.” – crystalramirezx

This one that ruined a pair of super cute shorts.

“12 was ecstatic to wear my new all white glitter shorts. Summer vacation, I step out my room feeling my myself passed my dad he nearly fainted (didn’t say a word) went to my mom a floor down and I was about to sit in the white sofas we had before I twirled for my mom to show her my outfit when she stopped gasped and told me to shower. The rest I don’t remember what happened, I do know we threw my shirts away. Wore them for maybe 30 mins.” – gu.pita

This one that was poorly timed because of an RBD announcement

‘Back when RBD announced they were splitting up 🥺 worst week ever tbh.” – josiiiee__

This super sad story that ended with being bullied.

“oh boy do i remember. So I was in private school with 75 students. And out of all the students I was the last one to get it. I was 14 years old everyone in my school was considered a woman and I was always made fun of because I was still a child (their words not mine) so the day I got mine somehow Everyone in my school found out. And some asshole’s decided to put condoms in my backpack I didn’t know they put him there so when I went to open my backpack day fell out and I was sent to the principals office and I had to explain to her that I was being bullied because I was the last one to get my. At that school. middle school dont ever want to do that again.” – memylerena

And this story that proves no shorts are safe when it comes to first periods!

“I was about 11 years old. I was playing outside with my primas and I remember feeling my biker shorts (it’s was the 90’s lol) get wet. I ran to the bathroom and I was bleeding. I called for my mom and my prima @d_quiin came to the bathroom and explained to me what I should do. I remember her telling me, not to eat lemon and other things meanwhile on it. Lol!” – esperanza_and_friends

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com