Saturday, August 22, 2009
Local Cat Buried In Supermarket Bread Aisle Searching For The Freshest Loaf
The manager of Edmonds’ Food Mania was shocked this morning when he walked around the corner to see a momcat trying to squeeze out of a giant pile of loaves of yummy Bimbo White bread. The cat had been there for over a half an hour, vigorously squeezing loaves of bread, brow furrowed in concentration, and squinting her eyes pouring over the color ties on the wrappers of each bag of bread in search of the freshest possible loaf.
“My mom always taught me that the freshest loaves were in the back.” said Agatha, a 12-year-old spayed Tabby from Lynnwood, as she extricated herself from the heap, “So, naturally when I come here to get bread, I dig to the back to find the freshest loaf. I never buy the first one…who does?”
Agatha was in search of the freshest possible loaf
“When you go to buy bread in the grocery store, have you ever wondered which is the freshest?” Manager Larry Bryant said. “ Most people don’t know how to tell, so they ‘squeeze’ the package for freshness or softness, possibly damaging the bread.”
Mr. Bryant said bread is delivered fresh to the stores five days a week, so there really is no need to check for freshness, it is fresh every day. Despite this, he said that some people have this ‘crazy, unstoppable, almost biological-evolutionary urge’ to burrow to the back of the stacks, to insist that they get the very freshest possible loaf available.
Bimbo bread is brought in fresh daily
“I see people like Agatha every day…“ Mr. Bryant continued “…they come in here and nearly attack the bread. They push back through the loaves, checking the dates on each tab and squeezing the bread, pretty soon they are buried in a pile like Agatha was.”
Agatha said that each bread delivery company has a specific code on the tab or color of twist tie (if applicable), indicating the day of the week that loaf was delivered. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, each day supposedly has a different color twist tie.
The secret of the freshness date is encrypted in the color of the plastic tags
“I got buried looking for the right color. Today being Thursday, I wanted a red twist tie-not white which is Friday, that’s almost a week old." Agatha said. "The colors go alphabetically by color. Blue, green, red, white, yellow, Monday through Saturday. It’s easy to remember, but I put a Post-It note in my wallet when I first found out about this so I would not forget the color sequence.”
The Bread Freshness Tag Daily Color Code Coordination Mandate:
Monday - Blue
Tuesday - Green
Thursday - Red
Friday - White
Saturday - Yellow
“There are two important factors here,” said Agatha, “first of all you want the bread that was delivered most recently and you want the bread that has the freshness date that is the farthest out.”
Agatha said that she sometimes even will freeze half the loaf when she gets home to ensure an even fresher taste at home for a longer period of time. She said “I wrap it in Saran Wrap or Ziplock-bag it, I put my own date on it, next I seal it with my Food Saver, only then do I freeze it.”
Agatha confessed a slight obsession with the colored bread tags, saying that she collects them and has over 500 in all. She said that she enters them in the 4-H Collections Hall exhibit each year and has won three Blue Ribbons and one Yellow. Agatha also said that only occasionally does she encounter the same problem at home, becoming buried in piles of frozen bread, searching for the next freshest dated loaf to use next.
Sharyn Thoma-Guay reporter-at-large
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