It is well known that Europe has stricter food regulations than the USA, which is one of the things I love about now living in Sweden is better food quality. I feel that consumers in US are guinea pigs with what is allowed in foods with chemicals, food coloring, high fructose corn syrup, etc. The thing that blows my mind is that large companies that produce food worldwide have different recipes for the same products in both Europe and the US; It has me questioning why they don’t use that same recipe for both Europe AND the US?!?!?
Here is a small example of the same product in Sweden and the US, Nature Valley Oats & Honey Granola Bars. Dan usually consumed these in large quantities, but when we moved to Sweden we found they did not sell these…until about a month ago.
US Ingredients: Whole Grain Oats, Sugar, Canola Oil, Yellow Corn Flour, Honey Soy Flour, Brown Sugar Syrup, Salt, Soy Lecithin, Baking Soda, Natural Flavor.
European Ingredients: Whole grain rolled oats (59%), sugar, sunflower oil, honey (2%), salt, molasses, emulsifier: sunflower lecithin, raising agent: sodium bicarbonate.
We all know that corn is a government subsidized crop in the US so that shows up in everything that you can imagine from gasoline to baby formula, so it’s no surprise that corn flour is in the US granola bar. I did a little bit of research about Sweden subsidizing crops, but couldn’t find anything of the sort, although rapeseed oil shows up in A LOT of foods over here which makes me wonder if that may be government subsidized somehow. I also find it interesting that in the European ingredients they show the percentage of oats and honey so you can see how much of the granola bar is actually oats.
Dan said it didn’t really taste any different, just the one we got in Sweden seemed to be crumblier. I also had skittles over here and think they taste similar to the ones in the US, and they do not use artificial food coloring in Europe, I’ll have to buy another bag to share the ingredients with y’all 😉
The granola bar on the right is from the States and the granola bar on the left is from Sweden.