Buyer beware

Is it just me or is the word “artisan” stamped on just about everything these days? Nope, not just me…I just did a quick Google search and it turns out over 800 store-bought items now claim to be “artisan,” according to a recent report from

In the truest sense of the word, “artisan” means higher-quality ingredients, better taste, and products that may be eco-friendly. But “buyer beware”… because the artisan trend is becoming little more than an advertising gimmick.

Artisan chips? I don’t think so. Artisan frozen pizza? Give me a break!

Consider this another lesson in label-reading. Look beyond the fancy, rustic-looking packaging to the nutritional information–calories, trans fat, and carb counts, for starters. Then go through the ingredient list. If it lists anything you can’t pronounce, chances are it’s not “artisanal.”

Once you’ve taken all of these things into consideration, then–and only then–should you make your purchase decision.

And if you really want to be sure you’re indulging in what makes the best sense, skip the supermarket “artisan” stuff altogether.

Support your local, independent butchers and cheese-makers. Or become your own artisan, and whip up some homemade chocolate truffles.

Knowing where your food comes from and exactly how it’s prepared is the best way to ensure you’re getting the very highest quality there is.