Today is the 8th anniversary of my most popular post, Veri-Green is not Veri-Good -or- more evidence that I am the most boring person ever. As of *right this second* this blog has been viewed solely on the merit of that one single post about green beans over 1,800 times. 1,821 people needed to know more about Kroger’s Veri-Green Beans. You understand what this means, right?
Now, I know those aren’t big numbers or anything, but I’m #1 when you search “zinc chloride green beans” and #5 when you search “veri green” on Google, so that’s basically the only thing I have going for me so stop peeing on my parade. I was only reminded of this stupid green bean thing again when I accidentally brought home a wayward can of these artificially preserved green beans and realized they were no longer ‘veri green’:
As mentioned before, ‘veri green’ is trademarked, so now I guess Kroger is doing their own store brand generic version of zinc chloride in their green beans? There are plenty of other name brand food companies using the ‘veri green’ label so it’s still a thing, just not for Kroger. Now, 8 years later, here are the same side-by-side comparisons:
The beans are pretty much identical as they were 8 years ago, down to the smell. Again, I didn’t taste them so maybe they taste the same, maybe they taste like unicorn farts, who knows. Arsenic is also undetectable in taste and smell as well so whatever.
One thing that I noticed was different now is that the regular cut green beans are in a can labeled as having a non-BPA liner but the beans treated with zinc chloride has no such label.
The can on the left is the non-BPA lined can; the one on the right is the zinc chloride bean can which I assume is teeming with literally all the BPA you can shake a stick at. Is there a scientific reason for the different type of can? If it was in fact a non-BPA lined can, I’m sure it would be labeled as such the same way that marketers want to label everything they can as ‘gluten free’.
For the record, I had to make a green bean casserole for someone else and sure as shit I wasn’t going to go out of my way to do anything fancy. I did go out and get a replacement for those eye searing zinc beans, so I’m not a total monster. I’ll probably get my scientician* license taken away because I didn’t do some actual testing, but here are the facts:
1.) I’m super lazy. There is no disputing this.
2.) Zinc chloride can sound super scary for dummies like me when in the context of a Wikipedia article but in truth is used in a ton of applications.
3.) Even Tom’s of Maine uses zinc chloride and people love them and offer up their first born children unto them so who am I to argue.
Essentially, is it poison? Not in the amounts used. Does it sound gross? Yes. Is it necessary? No. In the same way vaccines sound scary when you break down the individual components, no one wants to see that on the list of ingredients when in reality, green beans, water, and sometimes salt are all you should reasonably expect on the ingredients list of a can of green beans. If you’re desperate for brighter green beans without zinc chloride, then go with fresh or frozen as a hugely more expensive alternative. Regular cut green beans in a can are cheaper than treated, and as we all know, it comes out the same in the end so just eat what you want as long as you know what it is. This concludes my TED talk.
*Scientician is a perfectly cromulent word: