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SUMMARY OF SYRUPS.
Of the thirty-two samples of syrup examined, ten, or nearly one-third are found to be glucose syrups. The inferior sweetening power of glucose syrups make them an imposition upon the purchaser. It costs much less to produce a glucose syrup, yet there is but little difference in the retail prices of the genuine article and the cheap imitation.
For such articles of consumption as are compounded or mixed in such a manner that it is impossible to determine their make up, it is suggested that a law be passed that obliges a manufacturer to place upon his goods a label that discloses the per centum of the ingredients that are found in these compounds.
The samples of ground spices examined in the laboratory confirm the results found in other states and prove that in this article of food, adulteration is the rule and purity the exception. The high price of the pure spices and the popu. lar demand for a cheap ground article has called forth much skill on the part of the dealer to satisfy the demand; and now he is able to put on the market an article which will satisfy all demands except those for purity and flavor.
A mixture of ground cocoa nut shells, buckwheat hulls and a little cayenne pepper for flavoring, passes for pure black pepper. Corn meal, ground olive stones and cayenne pepper passes for white pepper. Corn meal and tumeric and cayenne passes for pure ginger. Wheat flour, tumeric or Martin's yellow, and cayenne sells for pure mustard. New adulterations are constantly being discovered and the analyist is constantly called on to identify new adulterants. The adulterations usually found are: 1. The bran and hulls of various seeds, as buckwheat, wheat, mustard and flaxseed.
2. Damaged farinaceous substances such as spoilt flour, corn meal, bread, middlings of various kinds. 3. Leguminous Seeds
peas, beans, etc. 4. Ground shells of the cocoa nut, almond and peanut. Ground olive stones are largely used. 5. Various coloring
matter, as tumeric, Martin's yellow, charcoal, sienna and red ochre, etc. By a judicious mixing of the above materials a fair imitation of any spice can be made and placed on the market and the compound will meet with a ready sale if it is cheap enough. The use of the above articles has called into existence an industry of some magnitude, having for its object the manufacture of spice mixtures known as pepper dust. The term is usually abbreviated to “P. D.,” and the manufacture of “P. D. Pepper,” “P. D. Ginger” and “P. D. Cloves” is a large and increasing industry. These imitations, resembling the genuine article very closely and only lacking the necessary flavoring, are sold at from three to four cents per pound. Manufacturers openly advertise themselves as dealers in these articles. A journal devoted to spice milling contains advertisements like the following:
St., New York. Manufacturers of all kinds of spice mixtures. My celebrated brand of “P. D.” pepper is superior to any made. Spice mixtures a specialty. Spices ground for the trade.”
As the result of the practice above quoted spices are found containing the following adulterants:
Allspice; adulterants, spent cloves, clove stems, cracker dust, ground shells or charcoal, mineral color, yellow corn.
Cayenne; adulterants, rice flour, salt and ship stuff, yellow corn, tumeric, mineral red.
Cassia; adulterants, ground shells, crackers, tumeric, minerals.
Cinnamon; adulterants, Cassia bark, peas, starch, mustard hulls, tumerie, minerals, cracker dust, burnt shells, sugar.
Cloves; adulterants, spent cloves, clove stems, minerals, allspice, roasted shells, wheat flour, peas.
Ginger; adulterants, cereals, tumeric mustard hulls, cayenne, peas, exhausted ginger.
Mace; adulterants, cereals, buckwheat, wild mace.
Pepper; adulterants, pepper dust, ground crackers, rice, mustard hull, charcoal, cocoa nut shells, cayenne, beans, bran, white and yellow corn, ground olive stones.
Mustard; adulterants, flour, tumeric, Martin's yellow, peas, corn meal, gypsum, ginger, salt.
It will be seen that the adulterations met with are very numerous and the list is constantly changing as the supply of material and sources of refuse may suggest.
Pepper is the most common of all the spices and is subject to the greatest adulteration. Blyth gives a list among which are “pepperdusts” known as “P. D.”, “ H. P. D.”, "W. P. D.” “P. D.” composed of linseed cake; “H. P. D.” hot pepper dust, ma'le chiefly of mustard husks; and “W. P. D.” white pepper dust, composed of ground rice. The adulterants are usually coarsely ground and it is not difficult on examination to pick out yellow corn, rice, cocoa nut shells, ground olive stones, etc. The appearance of the spice in its ground form makes it possible to use many kinds of refuse for adulteration, and advantage is taken of this fact to the utmost limit. Samples received at this laboratory have been so mild in flavor that it could hardly deserve the name of pepper.
Mustard is the flour of the white or black mustard seed from which the hulls have been separated by bolting. In the process of manufacture two customs have arisen which materially change the nature of the product. These are, first, the addition of flour for the purpose of improving its keeping qualities, and second, the removal of part of the fixed oil. The addition of flour gives the mustard such a white color that the addition of a coloring matter becomes necessary to restore the yellow color. The dye stuff is usually tumeric, but sometimes Martin's yellow is added. The last named is to some degree poisonous and should be prohibited. The removal of the oil is beneficial as it adds nothing to the flavor of the mustard and its presence injures the keeping qualities of the condiment. Although the addition of flour is harmless and has the sanction of long custom, it is gradually being given up and mustard containing nothing but the ground and bolted seed is now found in the market.
Cayenne pepper consists of the ground pods of the several species of Capsicum. It is said to be adulterated with brick dust, red lead, and coloring matters. Yellow corn, ,
, tumeric, ground rice and red ochre have been found in it.
Ginger is the powdered root of a tropical plant, Zingiber officinale. Owing to carelessness in the preparation of the
. root, a large number of qualities and varieties are found on the market. The adulterations are the addition of flour or starch, coloring with tumeric. Mustard hulls and cayenne pepper have been found. Perhaps the most common adulteration is the addition of exhausted ginger, the refuse left from the manufacture of ginger extract. This adulteration
. has the appearance of the genuine article but lacks its flavor and pungency. Only a careful chemical analysis will show the adulteration.
The flower buds of the clove dried and ground, constitute the spice. The flavor is due to a volatile oil which they contain. This oil being an article of commerce. is extracted and the spent cloves remaining are largely used for adulteration. Clove stems and pimento are also added. Pimento has a clove-like flavor but is much inferior. Its price is less than one-fifth that of cloves. The addition of the coarser adulterants is not common.
CINNAMON AND CASSIA.
These spices are ground barks of several species of the genus cinnamonum. The barks vary greatly in appearance and quality. The cassia, although inferior to cinnamon in flavor, is frequently substituted for the finer flavored and higher priced cinnamon. Exhausted cinnamon is also used. In one case the sweet taste of the exhausted cinnamon was made up by the addition of sugar.
Poivrette (ground olive stones) was also found.
Allspice is one of the cheaper spices, but its low price does not prevent its adulteration. Exhausted cloves, clove stems, corn and ground shells have been found.
The results of the above analyses only confirm the results found in other parts of the country.
Spices found on the market are enormously adulterated. Over 200 samples have been gathered from various parts of the state. We have been able to examine but a few of each kind and therefore a detailed analysis is not included in this report. As soon as the samples on hand have been investigated a circular will be issued from the office of the commissioner which will give a comprehensive statement of adulteration in spices.
F. G. SHORT,