Food / Propylene Glycol

Dear Trader Joe’s: It’s not me, it’s you.

I used to think I could waltz down the aisles of Trader Joe’s, tossing items into my cart without reading the labels because a couple years ago, I was told by a Trader Joe’s employee that none of the items in their stores contain hydrogenated oils and chemical preservatives.

Not only is that not the case, they looooove putting modified food starch in their products :-(

You can read more about what I’ve learned  about modified food starch here. Anyone allergic to propylene glycol should avoid it.

Trader Joe’s DOES make a big step toward food safety by doing things like marking items “gluten-free” and adhering to these guidelines:

  • No artificial flavors, colors or preservatives
  • No added Trans Fats
  • No MSG
  • No genetically modified ingredients

But, modified food starch makes me nauseous and I’m cutting it out of my diet completely. It’s in a LOT of packaged foods, such as these from Trader Joe’s:


You can check out the ingredients here in this slide show:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I used to drive out of the way to Trader Joe’s because I thought their products were more pure than they actually are. They still have some great stuff and I’m sure I’ll go there on occasion. It’s just easier for me to go to the nearby grocery store for most of my stuff and Whole Foods for anything I can’t find there. Whole Foods has a lot of great stuff.

Trader Joe’s, I’ll miss what I thought we had! *tear

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11 thoughts on “Dear Trader Joe’s: It’s not me, it’s you.

  1. Ahhh yes, kind of a disappointment! I LOVE Trader Joe’s but am also sad about all the allergy warnings (granted, I’m glad they PUT them on the labels) but SO many of their foods share equipment with eggs, nuts, and seafood. Even foods you wouldn’t expect! But the things I can eat from there I love! I can’t remember, are you okay with dairy? If yes, you MUST TRY the Mediterranean Cilantro and Chive yogurt dip. It is to die for.


    • Really? That’s no bueno :-/ Sadly, as much as I love to house a package of string cheese or a container of brie, I found out I’m lactose intolerant a number of months back. Sounds yummy though :-)


  2. Ugh, that’s too bad! I love their low prices and how they have ‘different’ stuff at Trader Joes’. They don’t call Whole Foods “whole paycheck” for nothing, haha, but it’s good that you have both by you and can find a variety of things. I have both stores by me as well, but go to Whole FOods more often just ’cause their store is bigger and they have more variety.


  3. Most of my shopping is at Whole Foods as well. Occassionally I can get a few things at Trader Joe’s that are safe for me and a little less expensive. Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods are both an hour drive for me. I usually run into Trader Joe’s to see if there is anything I can get that is safe and then head to Whole Foods to do the rest of my shopping.

    Modified Food Starch is in so many things. Bad if you have a wheat or glucose allergy as well.


    • Whole Foods is probably the only big corporate store I’m rootin’ for to keep expanding…. I’m excited for the farmers markets to start back up this year! :-) Between that and Whole Foods, I can get everything I need, for sure. Getting everything I need can be bit of a gamble at the regular grocery store.


  4. I totally understand…the reason I loved TJ’s was that I didn’t need to spend all day reading labels! Unfortunately TJ’s got bought out by a German Corp. a while ago, and every year their products get more processed, and less local.


    • Really, they were!? Veeeeery interesting! And the Germans actually have purity laws about stuff like beer over there….. tisk tisk… I guess it’s only a matter of time before there’s no difference between them and the regular grocery store.


  5. I agree Allergista! I am so disappointed with Trader Joe’s and their use of modified food starch. If your brand represents natural and organic then anything “modified” should not be on the shelves. I was so shocked when I saw it with my own eyes that I immediately associated the modified ingredients with GMO, and I wrote a letter to the corporate headquarters. Even if it is not GMO, it is still modified and not pure food. I say we all write letters requesting that all modified ingredients be removed. I am definitely not spending my money on it.


  6. Thank you for this post! I’ve been eating a lot of prepared food from TJ’s lately, because I’ve been too busy to cook. After a lot of the packaged food, I’ve been feeling nauseous after eating and couldn’t figure out why. I will definitely start checking the info on the packages to see if this why!


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