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An Obama twofer

Posted by Devra First  June 8, 2009 02:51 PM

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If it's a food blog, we must be talking about the POTUS and his clan. Seems not a day goes by without food-related Obama news. Foodie-est president ever.

So here are two interesting tidbits, merged into one post:

1. AFP reports that when the Obamas were in Paris, a taster tested the president's food before he ate it. The Atlantic Food Channel points us to Hot Air, which in turn points out that in 2003 a taster sampled the cuisine at Buckingham Palace before George W. Bush came to town. (Were pretzels involved?)

potus.jpg

It's fascinating to learn that potential assassinatees still do this. How long do they wait to dig in after the taster's work is done? A clever murderer could just use a slow-acting poison, no? It seems so medieval -- don't the presidents feel a little bit bad putting someone at risk this way? Couldn't they use, like, a rat or something to test the food? (Sorry, sorry, I'm not advocating animal cruelty, just wondering.)

rat.jpg

2. Agweek reports that Obama hasn't yet named an Ag Department undersecretary because he can't find one who has not engaged in lobbying. Zoiks. The undersecretary for food safety sets policy and handles international food safety relations, according to the story. That's kinda important. "Lobbyists say it is hard for USDA to fully participate in congressional consideration of the food safety reform and modernization bill without an undersecretary in place," writes Jerry Hagstrom.

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Sheryl Julian, the Globe's Food Editor, writes regularly for the Food section.

Devra First is the Globe's food reporter and restaurant critic. Her reviews appear weekly in the Food section.

Ellen Bhang reviews Cheap Eats restaurants for the Globe and writes about wine.
 

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