The new Mango Creme cookie from Girl Scouts of America
Ever wondered why we can't make cookie that's good for us? Here's why: it comes with a price, or rather a patent. Girl Scouts, the organization that boasts the world's best fundraisers (Thin Mints, Samosa and Tagalongs), introduced its latest treat: Mango Crèmes with NutriFusion™. Note the TM.
In an attempt to give the Girl Scout cookie a healthy makeover, ABC Bakers-Girl Scout's official pastry think-tank--concocted a "tropical-inspired" sandwich cookie doused in vitamins. Make that vitamin product.
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"Nutrifusion is the latest in manufacturers' attempts at making junk food healthier,"
Jason Boehm, a board certified nutritionist, tells Yahoo Shine. Fortify it with nutrients, throw in fiber, sweeten it with a so-called healthier sweetener, but a cookie is still a cookie, period."He joins a chorus of cookie-haters voicing their complaints about the Girl Scout cookie's new ingredient.On the surface, Mango crèmes take their cue from the Oreo: two biscuits sealed by icing. These Girl Scout biscuits, however, are coconut flavored and the icing is supposed to resemble a mango. It's a bold choice, but it's got potential if you're into Pina Coladas.
At odds with cookie critics is that added nutritional element: Nutrifusion. Not only is that the name of an ingredient, it's the name of a company behind a "scientific process that…when added to foods and beverages, supercharges their nutritional value," so says the company website.
According to ABC Bakers, three mango cookies provides percent of your Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of Vitamin B1 and 5 percent RDI of Vitamins A, C, D, E, and B6. The site also claims the cookies "have all the nutrient benefits of eating cranberries, pomegranates, oranges, grapes, and strawberries."
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But even Nutrifusion doesn't admit it's as good as nature's homemade stuff. "NutriFusion™ is not intended as a replacement for eating raw fruits and vegetables," reads a statement on the company website. "Rather, we target processed foods with the aim of enhancing the nutritional profiles of foods that dominate the human diet."
In statement to Yahoo! Shine, William Grand, the president of Nutrifusion clarified some of the confusion and responded to the backlash against his company's partnership with Girl Scouts of America.
"The product has NO chemical process," Grand tells Shine. "It is 100% natural and consists only of fruits and vegetables." He also states that Nutrifusion, and its process of dehydrating and powdering fruits, doesn't affect "taste or functionality of the products it goes into and is 100% natural."
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In response to the criticism (Jezebel's Laura Beck called the cookie concept "grotesque" while Gawker's Caity Weaver called it "your new nightmare") Grand shared: " The only criticism came from one uninformed writer that does not understand the severe nutrient deficit that is rampant in the US."
"The Girl Scout Cookie program are acting responsible (like Girl Scouts) and they are actually doing something positive," Grand continues. "The consumer will continue to eat snack foods, but here the snack is healthier and contributes in a small, but positive way."
Not everyone wants a healthier alternative to the classic cookie, especially when it comes to Girl Scout's offerings. "When I eat a cookie, I want it to be an act of decadence," writes the Stir's Adriana Valdez. "Otherwise it's no fun!"