Ruminations of a Taco-Obsessed Philly Native

Trans fats are public enemy number one these days, and the FDA is out to get removed from Americans’ diets as quickly as possible says Susan McGalla. Thanks to this new campaign, the public is becoming aware of trans fats in ways that they never experienced before. For many Americans, that’s a good thing. It means that they’re reading labels, paying attention to what they’re eating, and taking a stand about the food that’s going in their bodies. Others are taking it to an extreme–like this man from California, who is suing the makers of Ore Ida fries and tater tots over so-called “dangerous” levels of trans fats contained within the food.

While the FDA allows for label-makers to round down the amount of trans fat in a food item, rounding down to 0 and claiming “no trans fats” if the amount is 0.5 grams or less, Backus is arguing that, thanks to his regular consumption of Ore Ida tater tots and fries, he’s been put at a dangerous risk for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Though he wasn’t previously aware of the dangers associated with trans fats, he believes that the company should not have misled him into believing that these products were “healthy.” In addition to an unspecified amount of damages for his suffering, Backus wants the bags containing the “no trans fat” claims to be destroyed and Heinz to perform a “corrective ad campaign,” presumably to ensure that the public is fully aware of all of the dangers associated with eating tater tots and fries too often.