I’m not going to be the grinch that tells you not to buy Girl Scout Cookies. I mean, after all, purchases go to support the Girl Scouts. And who am I kidding, more to the point, they are delicious. I’d say that I have a box of Samoas in my freezer except that I ate them all within days of last year’s purchase. But if you’re going to indulge, know what you’re eating. Here’s the deal:
The Girl Scouts are definitely tapped into what’s going on with kids, food, health and obesity. How else can you explain that a section of their FAQs is dedicated to questions about preservatives, hydrogenated and palm oils and—I kid you not—free-trade chocolate? The bottom line is that, according to the Girl Scouts, their cookies:
* are made with shortening
* contain no preservatives
* contain less than 0.5 trans fat per serving, an amount that meets the FDA guidelines for a “zero trans fat” label
* are made with palm oil, but work with bakers and palm oil suppliers who are members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), an organization of growers, buyers, manufacturers, conservationists and interested parties striving to develop and follow best practices to ensure sustainability
* are made with chocolate not officially made from free-trade zone or child labor free chocolate, though their bakers claim to be working with suppliers and the Chocolate Manufacturer’s Association (CMA) on these issues
* are not gluten free, nor made specifically for any special dietary needs.
Even better, you can really know what your eating—and even control the sugar and other ingredients for your specific diet—by making them yourself. Have you seen Brooke’s Homemade Thin Mints, Jamie’s Homemade Trefoils or her Homemade Samoas (my favorites!). Yum, yum!