Five ridiculous food makeovers in Australia

I’m proud to be Australian and consider myself extremely fortunate to live in a country where there is so much opportunity, easy access to fresh foods and vegetables and a bountiful, extensive enviornment. Recently, our Government has made a valiant attempt to reduce the incidence and prevalence of obesity, coupled with encouraging the younger generation to eat more ‘nutritionally dense’ foods. While we have seen success in many areas, some initiatives are downright bizarre and in my eyes- absolutely unnecessary. Here are 5 which take the crown as the most ridiculous. 

Cola and other flavoured raisins

These raisins have been hitting our supermarket shelves in an attempt to get children to eat more fruit- and what better way to do that than mask them in flavours that they would find more appealing- Cola, Blackcurrant and Strawberry. They claim to be the ‘healthy alternative to sugary biscuits and sweets.’

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My thoughts- Raisins are already sweet enough on their own- Why add MORE sweetness to them with blackcurrent or strawberry flavours and which genius thought of adding a COLA flavour? Maybe the manufacturer thought raisins are chupa chups or something. You guys know I’m a fan of #strangebutgood combinations. This sounds like #strangeANDcrap.

The Low carb potato

Our media harks on and on about being the pioneers of the first ‘Low Carb potato’- with 50% less carbs (naturally) than other carbohydrate sources, these potatoes are great mashed, baked and roasted.


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My thoughts- Folks, we have some clever marketing going on here DING DING DING. Notice the asterix next to carbs? Their tool of comparison is against rice and pasta. That’s right- RICE AND PASTA. Of course its going to be less carbs PER 100 GRAMS when you compare it to them! Compared to ‘normal’ potatoes- there is barely any difference.

In terms of these being full of vitamins- what are other potatoes full of? I know! What the marketing team for this product is full of!

Slimcado Avocados

The ‘Slimcado’ avocado looks like an avocado, feels like an avocado and tastes like an avocado- yet has one key difference- they have 1/3 less calories than other avocados.

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My thoughts- 

1. ‘It looks like an avocado’– Yeah a gross, unappealing one.

2. ‘It feels like an avocado’– ….I swear every avocado I have ever bought feels different. This makes no sense!

3. Personally, the beauty of eating an avocado is enjoying the rich, buttery HEALTHY taste – I highly doubt it tastes similar. Maybe 2/3 similar.

Super broccoli

Beneforte ‘Super Broccoli’ is cropped in such a way to have 2-3 times more glucorphanine that any other broccoli. (Glucorphanine- a naturally occurring compound only found in broccoli which reduces the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer and heart diseases).

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My thoughts- Is there a fruit or vegetable out there that DOESN’T potentially reduce the risk of such diseases? Furthermore….why does broccoli out of all the possible food choices out there need to be fortified with added vitamins? I’m still in disbelief…

The Slim Chip

Saving the best for last- I stumbled across this gem of an article a few years back and after some research, it looks like it will indeed become a reality- Introducing the slim chip-

No fat, No calories made out of edible cardboard which come in a variety of flavours including sweet potato, wasabi and cheddar.

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My Thoughts– ………………………………………


What is the most ridiculous food product you have come across? Walden Farms calorie free peanut butter springs to my mind…

Would you consider eating any of the above foods or including them in your diet?

What ridiculous initiatives have your home country tried to implement? 


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86 thoughts on “Five ridiculous food makeovers in Australia

  1. OMG the slimcado!! This is the 2nd blog i’ve seen it on- the real question is, how does it taste??? SO strange. I just can’t imagine why you would want to change a real avocado. They are like the most mouthgasmic food ever. (<— I clearly found your blog by reading Kiss my broccoli- hah!)

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Amie- sorry that the first post you had to read centralised around these ‘awesome’ products Australia has on offer…oops. Mouthgasmic would be the polar opposite of each of them 😉

      PS Kiss my broccoli is X rated perfection.

  2. Oh wow some of these were bad. BUT, and I may get hate for this, I have tried the cola raisins and I am actually a fan. I first tried them in the UK as the ‘Nakd’ brand makes them, and then the ones in Aus. There isn’t any added sugar to them, so they arenj’t any more sweet than a sultana, but they taste exactly like those little cola bottle lollies. I have seen those potatoes and it makes me so sad that many vulnerable people will go and buy them, thinking they’re a great choice.
    And I’m totally with you – the best part about an avocado is it’s butteriness (I just invented a new work) and richness, take that away and it’s just not enjoyable. I wish people would stop *** with nature.

  3. Stop tampering with foods! Seriously. Broccoli is already awesome for you, it has the added perk of being deliciously when very delicately roasted 😉 Avocados are also naturally great, with the bonus of looking like snot, win.

    As for the low-carb potatoes, I don’t even know where to begin. If I see one more piece in the media about substituting in quinoa for rice when trying to reduce carbs I’ll go ape. Does anybody do research before they print that stuff?

    1. Slightly off topic, but all my friends and family think roasted broccoli is bizarre- they think I’m weird for liking it that way (which is only a recent trend, after blogging) but still…

      But yes back to the topic, I’m going to buy those low carb potatoes and test out their ‘theory’

  4. Low Carb Potato??? But I mean…what…..I don’t get it!! If I want to eat carbs, then I eat carbs and I don’t want low carb! The same with SLIMCADO…that WORD already makes me shudder. I mean, I eat the avocado BECAUSE of the healthy fat, jesus. They seriously don’t get anything about good nutrient dense food.

    1. Exactly right! My friend who lives in Germany says compared to countries like US/UK/Australia, you guys are pretty lucky in terms that the ‘low carb’ everything craze isn’t big there. Its relatively small here compared to America…I swear everything has a low carb availability there

  5. The slimcado is just a hell no!! I hadn’t even heard about it before but seriously what in the weird?

    The potato one is just a classic ‘marketing’ ploy of either create or see a problem and then ‘solve it’ using something existing but putting a new spin on it. Ugh.

    I remember that chip article from years ago too. I bizarrely kind of want to try them though just to taste how terrible they are!

    1. Sweet, well I have a stack of leftover stationery from when I was making notes so I’ll season some cardboard with spices and make you some slim chips- homemade. 😉

      We should screw going to palate and have a picnic feasting on low carb potato wedges dipped in slimcado guac and have cola raisins for dessert.

  6. I have to defend the cola raisins too… like Aimee, I’ve tried the Nakd ones here in the UK and they really are delicious and the cola flavour is natural so I don’t see anything wrong with them 🙂 I wouldn’t say you should replace them for just pure raisins, but as a healthy alternative to actually cola bottle sweets I think they’re great!

    On the other hand, those slim chips.. I thought you were joking!

  7. Oh my dazeeee- between the slimcado & low carb potatoes, I am lost for words. They sound as ludicrous as the concept of sugarfree chocolate. Even though the latter is fairly common, it’ll never be okay in my books. Indians seem to love strawberry-flavoured products and as a result, they’ve recently introduced strawberry Oreos here. I am both skeptical and intrigued – they could either be really awesome or really gross..only one way to find out ;)!

    1. OH geebuz, I tried sugar free chocolate once….Seriously one of the worst things I have EVER tasted. Like chalky fake stuff.

      We have those oreos too (seeing as Australia brings every flavour except PB argh!) which just recently came out….I think you should do the right thing and taste test it for the both of us 😉

  8. Haha, nasty!! The only ones I’ve actually seen in person were those cola raisins which I wouldn’t buy, but perhaps would be better than candies/lollies for kids who are dying for a treat?
    And I totally agree with you on the avocado thing. As my doctor says, “Avocados are the perfect food”. Why ruin an amazing this?!

  9. Oh God — dying over here. My favourite are the low-carb potatoes 😉 We have low-carb bread over here, which I imagine people eat if they want to make themselves sad. OH! And since I’m Canadian, I can’t go without mentioning sugar-free maple syrup, aka: maple flavoured chemical sauce. That just… frightens me 😯 😯

    1. We have sugar free maple syrup here too I think- but luckily not low carb bread. I don’t even understand that concept! I remember in America seeing literally product after product which were low carb- I couldn’t believe it!

      Buying those potatoes tomorrow just for you. 😉

  10. The slimcado and cola flavored raisins…what!?! That’s just crazy! I mean…I get where they’re coming from, but some of these food makeovers are just nuts. And not only that, what the heck are they doing to these veggies and other foods products to make them “healthier?” Probably adding more chemicals and unnaturally modifying their make-up…how can that be healthy!?!

  11. I’ve tried Slimcados before and yea….they’re horrid. Never again ever. Annnnnnnd pretty much anything ‘sugar free’ that Walden farms does freaks me out. Give me real maple syrup, peanut butter and caramel sauce, thank you very much!
    Oh, and I would totally try those raisins though.

  12. Wow, these are pretty ridiculous. I think raisins taste great the way they are, anything added to them would just make them taste weird. And edible cardboard? I’d much rather eat a regular potato chip with all the fat and awesome taste,

  13. Slimcado? Oh my goodness, these are crazy! My favorites are fast food restaurants that advertise things like “crispy” chicken salads as healthy. Hello! It’s fried chicken on top of some iceberg lettuce. still not healthy.

    1. Potatoes DO get such a bad rap- No joke I consider baked or roasted potatoes to be one of the most satisfying and filling foods out there. And WHITE potatoes not sweet or low carb lol…I’m going to buy a package of it and test out your french fry recipe to it!

  14. Hahaha – oh my! that “low carb potato” and your thoughts on it! ..on all of these..Oh man – I needed a good laugh today – thanks Arman!
    There are some marketing people getting rich off these package designs FOR SURE!
    Well , there were these potato chips that were big in the late 90’s made of “olestra” which should have been renamed to O-exlax GAH! This article had more enlightening info on this “miracle”,28804,1991915_1991909_1991785,00.html

    1. They sure are…why didn’t we think of it 😉

      OHH the stupid olestra- One of my friends works in a discount supermarket where they sell of stock that other supermarkets don’t want/can’t sell- half the products are Lays made with Olestra…the ‘fake’ fat. Yuck!

  15. Omg where do they come up with these things? I can’t think of a Canadian product off the top of my head but I’m sure they’re out there. Veggie chips are something I never understood because most are made out of dried and ground veggies, mixed with starch and reformed into veggie shapes. Just eat a carrot for gods sake!

  16. UGH! Holy genetically engineered crap alert. I really really really REALLY hope that food companies will stop trying to change components that define the actual food, like the healthy fats in avocado and the carbs and potato. Definitely NOT real food. Cola flavored raisins??

  17. Holy crap on the raisins!!! If you start kids out at an early age eating whole foods – they never know the difference or can’t learn not to like them later when you try to introduce them- they just know them as food.

    Potatoes have tons of vitamins – I get the need to watch carbs for certain body types but it is the types of carbs – not crabs itself – why don’t people get this! With age, I have had to make changes but I still eat healthy carbs!

    I would eat the broccoli only because I toot with all healthy veggies so I could eat a bit less & get all the good stuff.. 😉

    1. Exactly- the sad thing is so many of these products are targeted at kids- who will grow up thinking that cola flavoured raisins are the norm.

      I personally find white potatoes get such a bad rap- I find them more filling and satisfying than sweet potatoes! As long as their not deep fried or battered, whats the harm!

  18. haha I was actually laughing out loud by myself in a cafe reading your post 😛
    Just eat real food people!!!! Why do we have to keep making things more complicated then they need to be? Grrrr! No wonder everyone is so confused….

    Anyway… onto another topic… what time is the blogger meet up? I work from 9-4 on the 23rd 🙁 But am in the area so can pop by when I finish 😀

  19. Oookay, you’re craaazy folks over there in Australia! I’m afraid to say we can’t beat you on that field. Huge jars of Nutella? Yes. Creative marketing or any mind-blowing products like that. Though those cola-flavoured raisins remind me of cola-flavoured whey drink promoted as a healthy children’s beverage when I was younger. Wow, I have nooo idea why they’re not selling it anymore [irony alert].
    Though all of these are ridiculous the potato is probably the most hilarious. I’m undecided whether to consider those marketing people clever or wonder if anybody actually buys into the advertisement. I mean … if it got carb-phobic people to eat their delicious carbs believing they’d made a smart choice … But as it won’t – though eating potatoes IS a good choice just like any carb would be – yes, no words for that.

  20. Ha these are all hilarious! Isn’t broccoli already one of the best vegetables for you to eat? I will agree with you though, there is some good marketing going on. This reminds me of the TV commercials we have been having here in the states for Burger King’s reduced fat fries. I don’t eat burger king, and don’t actually like white potatoes or fries but if I did i’m sure these wouldn’t taste the same and whatever special oil there using to stop the absorption probably isn’t very good for you.

  21. Omg these are ridiculous hhaah the potatoes though….so many people ignore the asterisks. The rains–I agree with you that they are already very sugary and Coca Cola seriously sounds gross. I like the attempt of your government but….they be heading down a path that will only lead to more straaaaange combos. I wonder if these products are working..?

    1. I’m going to buy those potatoes and try them out- see if they really are ‘just like other potatoes’. I’ll check out the supermarkets when I go next time- maybe they have already been eradicated lol!

  22. The potatoes and slimcado actually made me laugh but people are pretty insane for doing this and for supporting this. GE/GMO at it’s best right here!!

    There are a ton of things like this in Canada, and in other countries too, yet they’re hidden very well and not something the average person is aware of unless they are educated on this topic.

    -canola, corn, soy, white sugar beet, and imports like GE papaya, GE squash (zucchini, some varieties of yellow crookneck squash), GE cottonseed oil, and milk products made with the use of Bovine Growth Hormone are among the list of things I avoid.

  23. I would consider eating most of those foods that you listed above… as long as they weren’t GM to get that way. I like how most of the products you listed were at least focused on fresh produce! However, why can’t we just leave our fruits and vegetables alone! Making an avocado “slim” defeats the purpose of its existence. Simple as that.

    One of the strangest foods I’ve seen is grapples. Grape-flavored apples. My mom picked them up from the store one day after one of her teacher friends said that they tasted pretty cool. One stomachache later and I looked at the package… There was an ingredients list and no, the only ingredient was not APPLE like I had expected. Instead there was grape flavoring and a host of other things. Sometimes they crossbreed fruits so that’s what I assumed that they had done here. Nope. They doused an apple in an artificial syrup. Imposter.

    1. I honestly think they were GM- seriously how does an avocado all look like THAT!

      GRAPPLES. are you kidding me? Thats like when I once got a free package of apple slices from mcdonalds…there was actually an ingredients list with it!

      ….I’m craving a toffee apple right now.

  24. The slim chips tops them all…edible paper? Wft?! Why must we approach mindless snacking with a zero calorie Franken-food when we SHOULD address the reason behind the snacking to begin with…which 9 times out of 10 doesn’t even have a THING to do with food! And the marketing on those potatoes…Good grief!

    America is definitely present in this game as well. It seems like nothing out there is safe from the the zero carb, no trans fat, all natural marketing gimmicks…especially when they mean NET carbs, there are still hydrogenated oils, and the food has 14 unpronounceable ingredients! Oh and quinoa. Need I say more?

    1. EXACTLY! It is somewhat targetting people to continue mindless snacking by sending out the message ‘oh its ok to eat these, its 0 calories!’

      I am so confused by the net carbs thing you guys have. Although here in Australia, they don’t count the fiber carbs in their total carb count- its so sneaky! E.g. if they sold Quest Bars here under Australian nutritional panels, it would be like ‘Protein 20 grams, fat 6 grams, carbs 2 grams.’

  25. I’ve got a crazy idea. Why don’t we get rid of the chemically enhanced crappy frankenfood (like Cola!!) instead of worrying how to get more nutrients into broccoli. These products just make me angry. Grumble, grumble.

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