To Lucia Brand of Purple Yam (grated)
Florence Foods Corporation
Navotas, Metro Manila
I chose to buy your brand the last trip I made to the Asian store because they were so purplish, it gave me hope that I would not need to use food coloring to come up with that familiar purple color of ube.
However, the very first pack I opened had a dead insect in it. I had to throw it away, and kept praying that the next ones would not have any in it.
I proceeded, quite uncomfortably, to cook the grated ube, knowing that you do not practice sanitation and hygiene in your facility, after seeing that dead insect in the first package (I bought a total of 15 packages). I was rationalizing, "maluluto din naman."
But everytime I would stir, there would appear black specks or tiny tiny twigs? or insect legs? (no hairs, though).
I felt uncomfortable because I was planning to use it to make halaya and to flavor ube ice cream, and I planned to introduce my American neighbors to the Filipino cuisine. Now I am having second thoughts. My fellow Pinays would probably do not care as long as it was cooked (or would they? Should I even serve this to them?)
If you find it difficult to maintain sanitation in your workplace, please just freeze whole or cut purple yams instead, peeled and ready to grate, and sell them as is. I believe that would even be cost-effective for you. I would be willing to buy it at the same price you are selling the grated ube. That would give me peace of mind, just like I have been buying the whole Yucca (in place of cassava) and peeling and grating them myself. I like the uncooked frozen ube better than the powder variety, but if this is the price I have to pay for the frozen grated ube, then I might reluctantly resort to using the powder, or go back to getting the not-so-purplish brand but which was clean.
I do not know if there are others who have the same experience as I do, but I am almost certain I am not alone. So if in the next times I still get such products made by you and have the same problem, I will continue to spread the word on the internet.
Now if only other Filipinos with ube plants can sell their products frozen whole/cut or as plants through ebay, I would be a happy consumer.
"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister
A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!