One of the advantages of being a mother in Germany versus a mother in America is that my kids get to enjoy the yum-fun of the Kinder Egg. Unfortunately, the fear of being slapped with a $250 fine — or worse, getting groped by a Homeland Security agent as I smuggle them in from a trip abroad — was never worth the yum or the fun when I lived in the States.
As ridiculous as it may seem, way back when blacks were still unequal, women were more second class than today, and “organic” food on the table was the norm, the U.S. passed the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938, which “prohibits the embedding of non-food items completely enclosed inside food items, unless the non-edible part has a functioning value. For example a lollipop or popsicle stick is not edible but is a useful handle. This law was originally put into place to prevent the addition of hazardous items to processed food and has never been changed.” [link]
According to CNN, “last year, Customs and Border Protection seized 25,000 of them [Kinder Eggs] in 1,700 incidents.” Wow, 25,000 chocolate eggs gone. We’ve got all those starving children across the globe who’d be happy with a bowl of sticky rice …. and we’re throwing away a chocolate egg with a toy inside? I just want to know what Customs does with the eggs. We know the pleasure police burn weed and then (apparently) run for cover, but 25,000 eggs is a lot of chocolate to swallow. Worse than filling landfills with empty waste, they create trenches in the development and nurture of simple childhood pleasures for a society, of opportunities for a momentary joy where a little bit of chocolate and a small toy was enough to be happy about.
As far as I’m concerned, a world without Kinder Eggs is a world to be depressed about.
P.S. Hmm. Maybe customs officials are cracking down on Kinder Eggs because they can apparently be used as pot-smuggling vessels.
Tatiana von Tauber is an artist, photographer, author, and sometimes a blogger at the Legal Satyricon.