Today I needed a quick lunch so I drove over to the Fresh Market and picked up a brown rice California roll from the sushi counter. The good news was, it was pretty tasty.
The bad news was the ingredient list: I have accepted the fact that most california rolls use imitation crab meat. This imitation crab meat, however, contained sorbitol (why do you need a sugar alcohol in crab meat??), as well as monosodium glutamate (MSG). MSG is listed later on in the main ingredient list, and the pickled ginger apparantly contains aspartame (Equal). What?? Let's say I won't be eating that for lunch again.
I realize that Fresh Market doesn't necessarily have the "product standards" that a store like Whole Foods does (no high fructose corn syrup, MSG, artificial sweeteners). I looked at their website and they just say that they strive for "quality foods" - ok, not a regulated term.
However, if you're going to put up the front that you're some type of health food store (which many people believe Fresh Market is), can you at least not have aspartame in your pickled ginger? MSG?? Seriously. For the price you charge, you can afford not to cut corners with cheap, unhealthy ingredients and actually use the real things.
Ok, enough bashing. I did pick up some Gruyere cheese that will be featured in a recipe later. Ingredients: milk, enzymes, rennet, salt. Now that is a real food. But it was also made in Switzerland where they generally have higher standards anyway :)