Thursday, April 5, 2007

The Keep It Real Raffle

Here’s the proposal ... I’m going to do another drawing for some free tasty goodies.

I don’t know what the actual prize is yet, but I can tell you that it will be GOOD chocolate.

How can you get some? You have to help get the word out about the open comment period on the FDA’s proposed changes for the definition of chocolate.

image(Don’t worry, I’m not telling you what to say, you can go on there and comment in support of mockolate if you want. I want the FDA to actually hear from the citizens who buy the stuff and not just the industry action groups.)

For each one of the actions below, you can earn a virtual raffle ticket. The more you do, the better your chances:

  • Submit your comment to the FDA by April 25th (Leave a comment here - I’d love to hear what you say, but I respect privacy concerns)
  • Blog about the issue. (Leave a comment here with the link.)
  • Put a graphic or link (use one I created or one of your own) to http://www.DontMessWithOurChocolate.com on your site/blog/myspace/facebook/flickr profile. (Leave a comment here with a link to your website.)
  • Post in a forum about the issue with the link, or if there’s already a discussion going, post within the existing thread to keep the conversation going. (Leave a link here to the forum thread or if it’s a private forum, at least to the site.)
  • Here are a few extra rules:

    Please do not comment on the FDA site if you’re not in the United States or an American living abroad. That doesn’t mean that folks outside US can’t enter, you just don’t qualify for that particular point. (I could be wrong about foreigners commenting ... someone correct me.)

    You are limited to five entries (though you’re free to make greater efforts, but only the first five will count).

    You are responsible for calculating your “raffle tickets”. Just come here and leave a list of your deeds (you don’t have to list them all on the same day).

    You must comment with a valid email address, don’t worry, no one sees it but me (how else can I tell you that you won?).

    Final note, the object of this challenge is not to create a bunch of empty chatter, but to just widen awareness of this issue by engaging you, sweet readers, to pass the info along. So keep in mind that we’ll all win if we Keep It Real.

    Deadline for all comments here is April 25th at 11:59 PM PDT.

    UPDATE 4/17/2007: The first prize will be a $100 Gift Certificate to Chocosphere

    Also, since folks have asked, yes emailing your friends also qualifies. (Just don’t spam them over and over again ... but you wouldn’t do that.)

    UPDATE 4/26/2007: Contest entries are now closed. I’ll announce a winner later. Since the comment period has been extended by the FDA I’ll start a new raffle with a new prize.

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:28 pm Tracker Pixel for Entry     CandyFDAReviewChocolateFun StuffNews

    Comments
    1. Check out my blog at Granny’s Tasties
      http://grannycbb.blogspot.com/ regarding FDA’s proposed changes for the definition of chocolate.  I do hope that this can bring some results by getting chocolate lovers involved.

      Comment by CB Bouche on 4/06/07 at 4:48 am #
    2. I posted on the FDA website when I read about this a couple days ago…thanks for letting us know about it!  I’ve been passing the info and links on to the real-chocolate lovers in my life.

      Comment by KFSonshine on 4/06/07 at 5:31 am #
    3. I made my comment the first day I saw it.  Keep chocolate real!

      Comment by Cat Skyfire on 4/06/07 at 6:12 am #
    4. I posted on the FDA website and talked about the topic on a forum ^___^ (The forum was on a site called Neopets.com, but they delete boards so I don’t have a link to post, sorry.)  Two golden raffle tickets please :D!

      Comment by Philly :) on 4/06/07 at 7:26 am #
    5. i left a comment on the fda site & also emailed my entire address book.  a few friends got back to me to say they had also left a comment.  not quite a blog but still… 2 tickets?

      Comment by anne on 4/06/07 at 10:50 am #
    6. I made my comment. I’ll try and blog about it. Thanks for making us earn and respect our treats!

      Comment by Wendy on 4/06/07 at 11:35 am #
    7. I left a comment with the FDA after you posted the story.  Hope it makes a difference!

      Comment by April on 4/06/07 at 12:43 pm #
    8. I posted on another blog at journals.aol.com/ to get more folks involved.  I have been spreading the word to my friends so hopefully we can make a difference.  2 raffle tickets now.

      Comment by msbooch75 on 4/07/07 at 7:01 am #
    9. I commented on the FDA site…put me down for one ticket. Also, I love your blog! Thanks so much for getting the word out about this.

      Comment by maryofdoom on 4/07/07 at 7:05 pm #
    10. I commented on the FDA’s site & put a link up on my blog (I really like the cacao pod button!): Laura Rebecca’s Kitchen

      Keep chocolate real!

      Comment by Laura Rebecca on 4/08/07 at 3:04 am #
    11. Sadly as a UK resident I don’t have much ‘clout’ and can’t register my distaste (no pun intended) at the proposed changes.

      However as a web publisher and confirmed candy addict (as you know) I placed an article on my blog:
      http://kandyxchange.info/kandyxblog/dont-mess-with-our-chocolate-important/

      and on my KXC Forum:
      http://www.kandyxchange.info/forum/viewtopic.php?p=632#632

      As well as this I mailed some friends in the USA who were unaware of the situation and they will do what they can to.

      So you can see you are making a difference - we all just hope it is enough!

      GOOD LUCK!!!

      Comment by KandyX on 4/08/07 at 4:28 am #
    12. I knew nothing about this until I read your blog - thanks for the info.  I just posted a comment on the FDA web site, and I am also sending a letter.  I have no blog of my own, but I’ve sent a link to your blog and the FDA site to all my chocolate-loving friends.  (I have no idea how many raffle tickets that merits).

      Comment by Laura on 4/08/07 at 11:26 am #
    13. Hey Cybele,

      I just registered a comment on the FDA site and will reference it as well as the save our chocolate initiative in my next sugarsavvy.net entry at the end of the week.

      Keep up the good fight!  You are a champion of the people.

      Comment by joanna on 4/08/07 at 12:05 pm #
    14. My comment: As if our government hasn’t done enough to sell our nation’s health to the highest bidding food industry - no consumers would benefit from this change, and in fact, many may be harmed by the consumption of what would be allowed to pass for chocolate. Isn’t the Food and Drug Administration supposed to serve the people, not the pocketbooks of already wealthy bureaucrats of the food industry?

      I’ve also created a link on my personal website, linked in my personal info for this comment. There’s also a link on my facebook and blog profiles, but I would rather not share those in a public forum. Finally, I’ve summed up the issue and my feelings on it in my personal blog, but again, I’d rather not post those links.

      That makes for two tickets, plus three on the honor system if you so desire. smile

      By the way, love the blog, and soooo ready to hit Walgreens tomorrow for post-Easter sales.

      Comment by Rosa on 4/08/07 at 2:03 pm #
    15. So I’ve been outed on your list of blogs talking about the FDA stuff. But hey, that brings me up to four raffle tickets not on the honor system.

      Comment by Rosa on 4/09/07 at 2:27 pm #
    16. Thank you for letting us know about this issue! I’ve posted a comment on the FDA site, and I’ll email my friends and family about it as well. Keep chocolate real!

      Comment by Raedia on 4/10/07 at 4:42 am #
    17. Hello Cybele!  I happily blogged this issue for you (at http://sfgmaster.livejournal.com/11346.html) and also submitted a comment to the FDA.  Hope we win!

      Comment by Jeff on 4/10/07 at 12:47 pm #
    18. Thank you keeping us informed about this issue! This is something that should be on the news, actually. Anyway, I sent a comment via the FDA website, and I also told my sister about this (she’s the only one I know who might send a comment).

      Comment by Maria on 4/11/07 at 5:47 pm #
    19. Hi!  I’ve taken action on this issue.  I’ve posted about it on my blog—http://www.boogaj.com/chocolate_blog/2007/04/keep_it_real.html and on my other blog—http://www.boogaj.com/knitting/2007/04/seen_around_the.html
      I’ve also commented on the FDA’s website and I spoke to a reporter concerning the issue (he mentioned that he spoke to you also!)

      Comment by Julie on 4/12/07 at 7:25 am #
    20. I’m new to your blog and can’t get enough. Thank you for sharing such interesting news. I have posted a comment on the FDA’s website, which I have also pasted below. And I posted a link in my facebook profile. (2 tickets!)

      I’ve actually been learning a bit about the language of food labels as part of one of graduate classes. What a timely coincidence. Thanks again!

      Never could I have imagined a time when the word “natural” would come to mean so little. The direction of food consumption in this country has been taking a dramatic and sad turn; the cost and shelf-life of processed products has somehow become more important than the support of local farmers or the education of young people about how to nourish themselves. So when food manufacturers consistently demonstrate that they are more concerned with their bottom line than they are with informing - dare I suggest even being honest with - their consumers, a change such as this would surely demonstrate that our government encourages such deception and degradation. What possible benefit can be derived from taking a product such as chocolate and turning it from something that can, in certain forms, help the body into something that can harm the body? I see none.

      Comment by Jaimi on 4/14/07 at 4:21 pm #
    21. It would be a shame to let fake chocolate take over. I’ve petitioned, blogged, and linked, and you can bet I’ll tell my friends, too.

      Comment by Erik on 4/14/07 at 8:14 pm #
    22. I count three tickets that I’m eligible for. By remarkable coincidence, I also count three chocolate bars in my kitchen. (Or is it a coincidence? We’ll never know.)

      Comment by Annika on 4/15/07 at 3:59 am #
    23. I read about this on your site originally - Thank You!! But I posted my comments after finding link on another site that took me to Guittard’s page.

      Can I just say, Yay Guittard! I’m so glad they stand behind their product.

      Sadly, I have no blog. No more options for raffle tickets. Thanks!

      Comment by Kate on 4/16/07 at 10:57 am #
    24. I claim four raffle tickets!  I blogged about the issue here: http://www.sugoodsweets.com/blog/2007/04/save-our-chocolate/ with a link and graphic.  I also replied to Clay Gordon’s post here: http://chocolate.meetup.com/44/boards .

      How did you hear about the proposal?  Your blog was the first place I heard about it.  With all the hate comments that the FDA’s getting (probably due to you), I doubt they’ll enact the policy.

      Comment by Jessica "Su Good Eats" on 4/16/07 at 6:17 pm #
    25. I posted on the FDA website smile  1 raffle ticket!

      Comment by Coleen on 4/19/07 at 2:55 am #
    26. I posted to this site found at Google, and emailed my friends.  Chocolate berry berry important to me smile  Hope I qualify for your drawing.  Thanks for making it known.  I rarely participate in these things, but this is Special!  xoxo

      Comment by Virginia Accosta on 4/19/07 at 8:02 am #
    27. I posted on the FDA site and sent in a fax as well as blogging about it.

      Comment by digger on 4/19/07 at 9:01 am #
    28. I have submitted a comment to the FDA asking that they keep chocolate real, and have also emailed my chocolate loving friends.

      Thanks for raising awareness about this icky regulation.

      Comment by Allison on 4/19/07 at 9:05 am #
    29. O.K… I created a MySpace account just so I could post a ‘Keep It real” graphic. smile

      That and my Comment to the FDA is two tickets.

      Comment by Maggi on 4/19/07 at 10:07 am #
    30. Posted it on Livejournal with the argument you presented. :D

      http://la-dolce.livejournal.com/35027.html


      Long live chocolate!

      Comment by Tindy on 4/19/07 at 11:10 am #
    31. I left my comments at the FDA site and very clearly expressed that changing the definition of “chocolate” is not in the best interests of the consumer.  Instead, changing the definition only serves to benefit companies who intend to deceive consumers into believing they’re eating chocolate when, in fact, they are eating a poor chocolate substitute.

      Keep up the great work on your Blog.  My wife and I read it regularly.

      Comment by GadgetGuru on 4/19/07 at 11:36 am #
    32. I’ve blogged about it, I’ve emailed people, and I’m about to give the FDA my 2 cents

      See’s Candy has sent out an email, have you seen it. I got mine today.

      Comment by Lauren Fewx on 4/19/07 at 11:52 am #
    33. Here’s a weblink to the See’s email.
      http://seescandies.rsys1.net/servlet/website/ResponseForm?lLLlETXTA_ikLllkLsLHlLEmkHloFMLPQDJht

      Comment by Lauren Fewx on 4/19/07 at 11:53 am #
    34. I have also voiced my opinion by submitting my comments on the FDA website.  Thanks for bringing the issue to our attention.  I’m glad that See’s Candy is taking a stand against fake chocolate lets hope other chocolate manufacturers are smart enough to realize their sales will suffer if they start producing inferior chocolate!

      Comment by Sylvie on 4/19/07 at 12:46 pm #
    35. I posted on the FDA site and I passed on the info, so I guess that’s 2 tickets.

      There is also a concern for the kosher consumer, as from this (http://www.kashrut.com/Alerts/?alert=A2018) Consumer Kashrut Alert.

      Comment by EY on 4/19/07 at 1:59 pm #
    36. Saw your editorial in the LA Times today and immediately posted a comment on FDA site.  The proposed changes do not benefit the chocolate loving consumer!  I’m a first time visitor to candyblog- thank you for reaching out to us.

      Comment by SJ on 4/19/07 at 2:02 pm #
    37. Commented!  Hopefully they’ll pay attention.

      Comment by Sarah Husain on 4/19/07 at 3:24 pm #
    38. Read your column in the LA Times and sent off a comment to the FDS about “2007P-0085: Adopt Regulations of General Applicability to All Food Standards that Would Permit, Within Stated Boundaries, Deviations from the Requirements of the Individual Food Standards of Identity.”
      I also commented on keeping whole wheat real. The thirty-five page docket sounded as though it was written with health in mind but I kept getting the idea that cost was a factor there somewhere.

      Comment by La Mirada Bob on 4/19/07 at 5:41 pm #
    39. Thanks for getting the word out about this issue.  I petitioned and sent the information to friends.

      Comment by Jeanette on 4/20/07 at 3:52 am #
    40. Great stuff. Saw your article in LATimes. Thanks for the head’s up!

      Wrote FDA, emailed dozens of chocolaholic friends, left messages at
      http://forums.johnstonefitness.com/showthread.php?t=359 and http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=2362331

      Comment by Mark on 4/20/07 at 6:02 am #
    41. I commented on the FDA site and sent an e-mail to about 50 friends with the info you’ve published and info on how to contact the FDA with their comments.  Don’t know how many raffle tix that’s worth—you decide!

      Good for you for taking on this issue.  Many thanks.  (And loved the editorial—well written, well argued).

      Karen

      Comment by Karen on 4/20/07 at 7:50 am #
    42. I posted a comment on the FDA site… seems strange, as we move towards ‘truth in labeling’ for so many other products, that we’d take such a dramatic step backward where chocolate is concerned.

      Comment by Adam on 4/20/07 at 7:55 am #
    43. I commented on the FDA site, using the template provided, but adding a bit of my own thoughts as well.  I’m so glad you’re bringing attention to this issue!

      Comment by NTE on 4/20/07 at 2:29 pm #
    44. I submitted a comment.  This whole issue is really a shame but I’m disappointed to say that it doesn’t surprise me.  I also blogged about it (link here).

      Comment by Alex on 4/20/07 at 3:52 pm #
    45. Cybele, thanks so much for today’s great OpEd piece in LAT. It reminded me to kick in gear and defend what’s good & right in this world - Chocolate!

      I emailed note to various prominent left-of-center political blogs and commented on FDA’s site.

      Comment by desertwind on 4/20/07 at 5:12 pm #
    46. I sent the FDA a comment!

      Comment by Sharon on 4/21/07 at 2:12 am #
    47. Thanks!  I submitted a comment. 

      With all the news about wheat/rice/corn gluten tampering, it just seems to make sense to tighten, not loosen regulations regarding food.  Why should we be required to read the ingredient list of every single product we purchase just to make sure what we are getting is what we thought we were getting?  If it says Chocolate on the label, we should have a pretty good idea of what ingredients to expect.

      Comment by Ken on 4/21/07 at 4:43 am #
    48. I commented on the FDA’s website, enter me please!

      Comment by Elizabeth on 4/21/07 at 6:59 am #
    49. I made a blog post, posted an image link, and commented to the FDA. You can check them all out at http://inhumandecency.livejournal.com/877683.html

      Three entries for me, please! And thank you for helping whip up a public response on this. It’s hardly the most pressing issue of the day, but at least it’s one that’s clear and easy to act on.

      - Michael

      Comment by Michael Cohn on 4/21/07 at 8:16 am #
    50. As a fellow candy lover, I was very upset to hear about this!  I have spread the word

      -commented to the FDA
      -on Facebook
      -via Livejournal

      see http://legend-of-abi.livejournal.com/2007/04/21/ to see them all

      so three tickets for me, please!

      Comment by Abigail on 4/21/07 at 8:55 pm #
    51. I posted a response on the FDA page! How dare they mess with chocolate, did the learn nothing from Friends?!

      Cheers,
      Shannon

      Comment by Shannon on 4/23/07 at 6:16 am #
    52. Throw my name in the hat three times. I just posted a Bolshevik denunciation of this outrage at Fireon the Mountain. I called and email some folk and I hit the FDA with this:

      “Having been alerted to this sneaky little proposition by the watchdogs of the blogosphere, I want to add my voice to the many who would prefer that it be made harder rather than easier for big food companies to pass off adulterated products as without changing the title under which they are sold. Under this legislation, as I understand it, companies would again be free to label as maple syrup that high fructose goo now peddled as ‘pancake syrup.’”

      “And, please, hands off chocolate!”

      Comment by Jimmy Higgins on 4/23/07 at 5:35 pm #
    53. Left a comment on the FDA site, didn’t even know about the raffle, just saw the story on Slashdot.

      I have been hoping that the FDA would increase the strictness of what can be labeled chocolate, not decrease it…

      Comment by Devlin Bentley on 4/23/07 at 5:54 pm #
    54. I only see 4 optons, do we get a bonus 5th entry by completing all 4?

      Anyway, I commented at the FDA site. I blogged (here: http://jonskifarms.wordpress.com/2007/04/23/keep-our-chocolate-great/ ) and my post included the graphic and linked to the informative sites. I’ve commented on it in a private email group and will do so on another. I think that gives me 5 entries.

      Comment by Tricia on 4/23/07 at 6:26 pm #
    55. “As a consumer, I am strongly opposed to this change in labeling requirements. I am a chocolate enthusiast and I do not want to be forced to carefully read the ingredients list every time I am buying candy, just to make sure it is actually *real* chocolate.”

      There’s my comment - I’ll rack up more raffle points later.

      And, an alternative term for mockalate is Vegelate.

      Comment by nog_lorp on 4/23/07 at 7:08 pm #
    56. Just found out this a.m. on SlashDot and followed the instructions on the Guittard Web site to submit Don’t Mess With Our Chocolate comments to the FDA. Thanks to you and Gary and everybody for working together. I hope it’s not too late.

      Comment by Howard Kushner on 4/24/07 at 3:53 am #
    57. *** UPDATE ***

      According to Gary Guittard, “Because of the response the FDA has received we’ve been told the FDA will be accepting comments for a few more weeks.”

      Comment by Howard Kushner on 4/24/07 at 4:41 am #
    58. I sent off my protest to the FDA today.  I read your article on it a week or so ago but didn’t realize that there was a webpage to protest.  Thank you for bringing it to my attention.  Mocklate must be stopped! 

      I made my boyfriend sign it as well though he doesn’t eat chocolate as much as I do he was outraged when I told him about this! 

      Many thanks for the heads up.

      One virtual raffle ticket for me.  smile

      Comment by Renee on 4/24/07 at 4:56 am #
    59. I just learned about Docket 2007P-0085 (from http://slashdot.org/ “News for Nerds. Stuff that Matters.”).  I provided the following comments as Temporary Comment Number 153653.  I hope it helps.

      I am dismayed to read that some members of the chocolate-product industry are asking for permission to deviate from the requirements of individual food standards of identity.  Please do not allow us to be confused by a product called “chocolate” that is actually not chocolate as we know it.  I understand that members of the chocolate industry already produce “chocolaty” chocolate substitutes.  I have eaten those—I don’t like them.  If they are renamed “chocolate”, I might not be able to avoid them as easily.

      Please do not allow us to be set up to be duped into accidently buying an inferior chololate product because its label proclaims it to be “chocolate”.  If you must comply with industry desires, also require them to relabel non-deviant chocolate as “real chocolate” so we can tell the difference.

      Comment by Ken Newcomer on 4/24/07 at 5:58 am #
    60. I’ve blogged about this horrible proposal at http://l337k0ko.livejournal.com/9464.html, with a link to dontmesswithourchocolate.com included. I also left a comment with the FDA. I believe this counts for three entries. Wish me luck, non-contestants! ^^

      Comment by Ron on 4/24/07 at 7:47 am #
    61. I heard you on NPR, submitted a comment to the FDA, and sent out email to two other people who also agreed to comment.
      Three entries!

      Comment by Faan Tone Liu on 4/24/07 at 10:42 am #
    62. This was my comment:

      Dear Sir or Madam,
      Please do not change the labeling allowances for chocolate. If I wanted to buy imitation chocolate I already have that option. Chocolate is a wonderful delicacy, rich in tradition and taste. If the definition of what is considered “chocolate” is changed, that hurts me, the consumer. This change only benefits companies that market an inferior product and are trying to snooker the consumer who would normally never buy a “chocolate-flavored” product. Protecting the average citizen is the job of the FDA.

      Comment by Robin on 4/24/07 at 2:35 pm #
    63. Hmm, I did it for the Cause, not to win anything, but for the record I posted a comment to the FDA page, posted a message with a link to your LA Times editorial and the FDA comment page to my community discussion list (hundreds of subscribers), a follow-up message to the same list today, sent a message quoting the candyblog to my own “Alert List” fan-base (about 70 addresses), and of course, my “Chocolaty Frankenstein” illustration!

      —Bill Brown

      Comment by Bill Brown on 4/24/07 at 3:58 pm #
    64. Please enter me for one raffle ticket. I commented on the FDA site. If the FDA public comment period is being extended, I’ll blog about it.

      Thanks so much for your advocacy on this issue and all of your yummy candy reviews.

      Comment by danielle on 4/24/07 at 4:25 pm #
    65. Spreading the word to save our favorite bean!

      Comment by Power & Politics on 4/24/07 at 5:03 pm #
    66. Cybele, forgot to “register” on this post a few days ago when I
      commented to FDA.

      (I also sent links to various serious left/Center political blogs, but they didn’t go with the story. Fools.)

      So, I get one ticket?!?

      Comment by desertwind on 4/24/07 at 6:38 pm #
    67. If this passes, we might as well start eating carob (ugh). I’ve commented, and I’ll blog and link later today.

      Comment by DianeAKelly on 4/25/07 at 5:07 am #
    68. OK, blogged and linked.

      Comment by DianeAKelly on 4/25/07 at 6:41 am #
    Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

    Next entry: Pure Fun & Yummy Earth Organic Hard Candies

    Previous entry: Peeps Mash Ups




     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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