What Mary Poppins Can Teach Us About Food Labels

I love Mary Poppins. I really do. Anywhere from her LSD-induced chalk drawing adventures to flying through chimneys and over rooftops.

She has taught us that the imagination has no limits. And when in doubt of what to say, then make up a really long word like Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, and people will listen. People will believe you because, using a word like that… well… surely you know something that I don’t. In fact, as Mary often reiterates, “If you say it loud enough you’ll always sound precocious.”

pre – co – cious


  1. (of a child) Having developed certain abilities or proclivities at an earlier age than usual.
  2. (of behavior or ability) Indicative of such development: “a precocious talent for computing”.

And no one has heeded these words of wisdom more than the masters of creating new hard-to-spell and hard-to-pronounce food label words: our friends at the food additive and food chemical companies.

Let’s explore this dark underworld of food labels, shall we? Let’s delve into precocious-sounding words like ethyl methylphenylglycidate, anethol, nerolin, and isobutyl anthranilate that are being passed off as “Eat Me.”

Let’s also dive deeper into the possible secret ties between Mary Poppins and the drug companies. I mean really Mary? Prescribing sugar with medicine for a sick child? Three cheers for cough syrups by Vicks, Delsym, and Robitussin who have been following her advice for years (using HFCS… mmmmmmmboy!).

It’s all here in this 2 minute video short:

If there were a Mary Poppins remake, hopefully it wouldn’t go like this:

“Just a spoonful of ethyl methylphenylglycidate
Helps the food go down…”

So what’s our takeaway lesson?

If you can’t pronounce it, then don’t eat it.”

PS… ethyl methylphenylglycidate is a fruity strawberry flavor. You’ve been eating it in your smoothies, shakes, drinks, and blow pops for years.

How about a strawberry instead?

Strawberries Over Strawberry Flavoring

For more short videos, visit our YouTube channel.


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