Grape Nuts and "100% lean beef" scam

I was reminded of this Classic Column:
How can Grape-Nuts cereal contain no grapes or nuts?

by a recent Snopes article:
Claim: McDonald’s buys their meat from a company called ‘100% Beef’

It’s interesting that both the Kellogg brothers and C.W. Post had their own unique ideas about nutrition. They believed in a chemical free diet, low in spices, high in whole grains, low in fat and protein. Most of this followed the theory that spicy foods, could lead to an increase in carnal urges and insanity. Another one of the pack was Dr (as in Reverand) Sylvester Graham of Graham Cracker fame Both Graham and the Kelloggs were vegetarians. I don’t know about Post who was a patient in Kellogg’s sanitarium and was apparently inspired by it.

Later on, the Kellogg brothers’ belief ended up being more pantheistic. Wilfred Kellogg was considered one of the authors of The Urantia Book.

There never was a town in Japan named “Usa,” either. Just getting that in.

Search for “Usa Japan” in Google Earth and it will take you to the town of Usa (60,000 people) in Oita Prefecture.

Sorry, I meant to state that as an example of how “Made in ____” is not subject to whims like Usa [Japan]" despite urban legends to the contrary. Got distracted, hit Post, there ya go. Oops.

Actually, it wasn’t suppose to be a town.

It was a puppet state setup by the Japanese set up on a small island off the coast of Japan. This was allegedly done right after World War II. The Japanese would ship all of their products that were suppose to be exported to the United States to the tiny Island Republic of Usa for one last bit of paint or whatever it needed.

Then since the product was now made in the Republic of Usa, it could have MADE IN USA put on the label indicating a well made, quality product such as a Chevrolet Lumina rather than begin stuck with a MADE IN JAPAN label which would indicate a cheesy, cheaply made product such as a Toyota Camry.

“Unbelievable!” </fx Doc Brown>

Unfortunately, it’s not unbelievable because people actually believed it.

I do want to emphasize that this was merely an urban legend and that the Japanese didn’t do this. After all, you’d think the American regulations would pick up

Unless you were saying unbelievable because at one time, we thought American stuff was well made and the Japanese stuff was cheap garbage.

Doc: No wonder it failed! This junk was made in Japan!
Marty: All the best stuff is made in Japan now.
Doc: Unbelievable!

… I know it’s an urban legend. There are various tellings of it, usually found on the same list as the “8,000 word document for buying cabbages” and “Chevy tried to sell the No va in Latin America” dopey-tropes.

I heard it and have it filed as “a city named Usa”; I’ve heard your version as well; I’ve also heard that (ooh, crever people!) only the sticker itself was “Made in Usa.” But they’re all nonsense, as are most such labeling stories. And the Nova one.

However, at one time Japan *was *the source of cheap, junk-product imports, so there’s some basis to the trope. It just became outdated by about 1970 or so as cheap production moved to Taiwan and Japan started exporting their first-rate stuff.

I’ve read the McDonalds has actually had a positive effect on the quality of American beef. Back when Mad Cow Disease was first becoming an issue, there was talk about new government regulations to prevent its spread into the United States. Not surprisingly, beef producers resisted the idea of new regulations on their business. Then McDonalds stepped in. While it had no legal authority, it’s the biggest purchaser of beef in the country and it had vested interest in maintaining public faith in the safety of hamburgers. So it essentially told the beef producers to “voluntarily” agree to comply with all of the government’s proposed regulations.