Fitted to the culture being represented by the meal, bread is one the most popular, traditional foods prepared in a variety of ways. It is a staple in almost every culture's daily meal selections, sadly though, bread is laced with ingredients that you wouldn't imagine. This ingredient is known as L-Cysteine. L-Cysteine is a common amino acid dough conditioner that is used in the process of making bread and also used as an additive to extend the shelf life of the bread. L-Cysteine is comprised of human and animal(especially duck and pig) hair, yes, hair! You might be asking, "Is this all bread?"Well, the truth is, if its sitting on a grocery store shelf, the answer is most likely, yes, mainly because the extension of shelf life is one of the main reasons for using this ingredient.
The worse part of all of this is that the FDA(Food and Drug Administration) approves of this as being a safe additive to use and depending on the quantity used, the listing of it in the ingredients of the packaged bread, is not necessary! Here is the official verbiage per the FDA's website as it pertains to the usage of L-Cysteine:
TITLE 21--FOOD AND DRUGS
CHAPTER I--FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER B--FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED)
PART 184 -- DIRECT FOOD SUBSTANCES AFFIRMED AS GENERALLY RECOGNIZED AS SAFE
Subpart B--Listing of Specific Substances Affirmed as GRAS
Sec. 184.1271 L-Cysteine.
(a) L-Cysteine is the chemical L-2-amino-3-mercaptopropanoic acid (C3H7O2NS).
(b) The ingredient meets the appropriate part of the specification set forth in the "Food Chemicals Codex," 3d Ed. (1981), pp. 92-93, which is incorporated by reference. Copies may be obtained from the National Academy Press, 2101 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20418, or may be examined at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to:http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html.
(c) The ingredient is used to supply up to 0.009 part of total L-cysteine per 100 parts of flour in dough as a dough strengthener as defined in 170.3(o)(6) of this chapter in yeast-leavened baked goods and baking mixes as defined in 170.3(n)(1) of this chapter.
(d) This regulation is issued prior to a general evaluation of use of this ingredient in order to affirm as GRAS the specific use named.
[42 FR 14653, Mar. 15, 1977, as amended at 49 FR 5612, Feb. 14, 1984]
Yummy, right? Not to say the least. In times like these it is a wise practice to begin growing and making our own foods. This practice will ensure that we are aware of every ingredient we put into our body's temple ,thus preserving and presenting our,..." bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Romans 1:2
CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21. (n.d.). Retrieved March, from http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr=184.1271