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Published: Thursday, 7/18/2013

Editorials

Buyer beware

Rumors of the death of the Hostess Twinkie have been exaggerated. While that will distress health enthusiasts, many Americans — and many Toledoans — will rejoice.

This week’s return of the Twinkie will not mean jobs here or elsewhere in the United States. The snack cakes will be made in Canada and Mexico.

After Hostess Brands Inc. filed for bankruptcy reorganization last year, the company sold off its brands. Metropoulos & Co. and Apollo bought Twinkies and other Hostess cakes for $410 million. They think that the Twinkie name is worth real money, and that there is a market for this cocktail of calories.

So what is in this famous “golden sponge cake”? According to Wikipedia (spoiler alert): enriched wheat flour, sugar, corn syrup, niacin, water, high fructose corn syrup, vegetable shortening, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil, and beef fat, dextrose, whole eggs, modified corn starch, cellulose gum, whey, sodium acid pyrophosphate, baking soda, monocalcium phosphate, salt, cornstarch, corn flour, corn syrup solids, mono and diglycerides, soy lecithin, polysorbate 60, dextrin, calcium caseinate, sodium stearoyl lactylate, wheat gluten, calcium sulphate, natural and artificial flavors, caramel color, yellow dye, and red dye.

The Twinkie cream filling gets its sheen from cotton cellulose, which does the same thing for rocket fuel. A Twinkie has 150 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 18 grams of sugar, and 20 milligrams of cholesterol.

One reaction to those details: That’s why Twinkies taste good. Another: That’s why doctors don’t recommend them, and you don’t see athletes eating them. Or drinking rocket fuel.



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