There could be what in my spice cabinet?!

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

spices
And to think, there could be rat hair lurking inside those beautiful spices…

It’s amazing how much more flavorful food becomes with a dash of salt and a sprinkle of pepper. Well, according to a study from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there just might be some nasty extra “flavors” inside those spices!

The agency decided to investigate spices that were imported (brought in from other countries) from 2007-2010, especially because spice-related illnesses have numbered almost 2,000 since 1973. Let me tell you, the results were definitely… hairy.

In addition to traces of the bacteria salmonella – a deadly kind of food poisoning – there were also bits and pieces of insects, poop, rodent hair, and other filthy materials.  If that’s the case, then why did Michael Taylor, FDA’s deputy commissioner for foods, say the agency is “not recommending that consumers stay away from spices” for the time being?

Well, basically, as long as the spices are added to food before being cooked (meaning they’ll be cooked along with the food), it’s unlikely a person will get sick. Also, it’s not as if people add tons and tons of seasoning to their meals anyways. Still, there’s always a small chance, so flavor at your own risk!

Featured image courtesy of Chris Martino on Flickr. Image of spice bags courtesy of judepics on Wikipedia