"The apple-blackberry sauce sold widely in Seattle supermarkets, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture organic seal on the label, says it comes from Chino, Calif. It also says "Product of Canada." So how do you know where it's from? You don't.
Dried banana chips are labeled as being from Sumner. But banana trees don't grow in Sumner. Peanut butter from Canada? There are no peanut farms in that country.
Congress passed a law in 2002 saying that consumers were to be told where the food they buy comes from. But five years later, shoppers who try to determine the origin of meat, poultry, fruit, vegetables and frozen or canned food in most of America's grocery stores often enter an Oz-like land of obfuscations, omission or outright lies.
Without knowing where the food came from, consumers can't be certain it is safe, experts say.
"This labeling becomes vital in ensuring that products are of high quality," said Caroline Smith DeWaal, director of food safety for the Center for Science in the Public Interest. "If people know they're going to get caught for shoddy practices, they're much less likely to engage in them."
So what happened to the labeling law?"