Why Are They Picking On Sea Salt?

Jan 19, 2010 by

I am at the grocery story looking for sea salt. With mission accomplished, I glance at the label.

“THIS SALT DOES NOT SUPPLY IODIDE, A NECESSARY NUTRIENT.” And yes, it was in all caps. And it was not on that tiny warning label you can’t read anyway. It was right there smack on the front right below “SEA SALT” and ‘IDEAL FOR RUBS, ROASTING AND FINISHING.” Whatever “finishing” means and again, yes, all caps. And said warning was on every sea salt product on the aisles.

Now, I know what Iodine is, but I was clueless what Iodide was. Off to trusty Wikipedia.

An iodide ion is an iodine atom with a −1 charge.[1] Compounds with iodine in formal oxidation state −1 are called iodides. This can include ionic compounds such as caesium iodide or covalent compounds such as phosphorus triiodide. This is the same naming scheme as is seen with chlorides and bromides. The chemical test for an iodide compound is to acidify the aqueous compound by adding some drops of acid, to dispel any carbonate ions present, then adding lead(II) nitrate, yielding a bright yellow precipitate of lead iodide. Most ionic iodides are soluble, with the exception of yellow silver iodide and yellow lead iodide. Aqueous solutions of iodide dissolve iodine better than pure water due to the formation of complex ions.

So, that explains that.

Why is there a label on the front of this canister of salt implying I might not live if I use it? Not that it has dangerous chemicals or anything, but rather that it doesn’t contain something I don’t understand that apparently I need to survive?

Why are the “They Department” picking on sea salt? Doesn’t sea salt just kinda hang out in the sea minding its own business until some huge dredge machine scoops it out of its cozy environment and takes it away from family?  Isn’t sea salt’s only crime being salty and, if you believe the labeling, from the sea?

I understand warning labels on cigarettes, at least to a point. Because if you need someone to put a label on cigarettes to tell you they are harmful, well, you’ve got bigger life problems you need to deal with. But sea salt?

Someone who sells sea salt obviously ticked off someone in the “They Department.”

I mean, why don’t we have similar warnings on … well, just about everything.

“HI, THIS BEEF DOES NOT CONTAIN AIR, NECESSARY FOR LIFE.” Or, “THIS BANANA DOES NOT CONTAIN WATER, A NECESSARY NUTRIENT.”

According to the ingredients on said sea salt canister, inside is salt (duh) and yellow prussiate of soda, which “They” kindly tell us is an anticaking agent.  Honestly, I’m more worried about having the prussiate of soda than I am about not having iodide, especially since “prussiate” shows up as misspelled on my spell checker and iodide doesn’t.

Just so you know; besides not having iodide, sea salt also doesn’t have air or water. So it’s basically junk food I guess. Or something.