January 30, 2004

Chocolate Protest

From French News.com

Bastard Chocolates from Brussels
A well-known chocolatier from the Tarn has created a 40kg bust of Nicolas Sarkozy in protest against the European commission directive permitting the sale of chocolate containing vegetable oil, as chocolate. Why Nicolas Sarkozy? Because the chef d’œuvre was supposed to be delivered on Saint-Nicolas’ day. Unfortunately, although the chocolatier Yves Thuriès convoyed his statue to Paris in person, it only reached the deputy prime minister in the New Year as he has been rushing about all over the place
as usual.

The big beef is that, since August 2003, 5% vegetable oil may be added to chocolate without being mentioned in the ingredients. “This is imitation chocolate, a fish finger of a chocolate,” thundered Monsieur Thuriès. “There should be an indication on the packet. It is the beginning of all sorts of bastardisations. It is as if beetroot juice could be secretly added to wine or margarine to butter.”

Before there is too much muttering about bloody Brussels, it should be recalled that the ungastronomic nature of the chocolate directive has to be laid at the door of the British government who, some ten years ago or more, successfully fought for the right to preserve intact their own hallowed gourmet names in milk chocolate, complete with secret soap ingredient.

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