Aunt Millie's Searing Sword Of Schmutz Is Really Just "Food Grade Oil"

Christina sent us an update on her schmutzy bread loaf. According to Aunt Millie’s, the mystery gunk adorning the Seeded Italian Bread is “food grade oil.” Mmmmm!

Thank you for contacting Aunt Millie’s Bakeries. On behalf of everyone at Aunt Millie’s, I apologize for the condition of your loaf of Aunt Millie’s Homestyle Seeded Italian Bread.

From the description provided, the black streaks across several slices of your loaf were slicer marks. This occurs after food grade oil is applied to the slicers. The first few loaves of bread are to be discarded due to this occurring. However, on rare occasions, if a loaf is missed or too much oil is applied, there is no health hazard of the bread being toxic in any way. I will alert the production team to your comments.

I would be happy to send you out replacement coupons if you would provide a mailing address.

Customer Service

And that’s the end of that chapter.

PREVIOUSLY: Searing Sword Of Schmutz Taints Aunt Millie’s Bread Loaf


Edit Your Comment

  1. Me - now with more humidity says:

    Very good.

  2. shockwaver says:

    Damn, I had $20 on ebola as the cause.

  3. timmus says:

    “Food grade oil” is clear. This stuff is black. This explanation gets an F, or at least an I for incomplete.

  4. plasticredtophat says:

    Maybe the slicer was greasy?…with black grease…?

  5. azntg says:

    @timmus: Well, surely, you’d think for a slicer that’s designed to slice bread made for human consumption, they’d use food grade oil regardless of what color it is.

    It flies with me.

  6. JackWalker says:


    “Food grade oil” is clear. This stuff is black. This explanation gets an F, or at least an I for incomplete.

    Survey says! You’re half right. While most oils are clear, there are quite a few that are rather opaque and as a result can sometimes blacken when cooked or heated. This would explain the black marks.

    I’d assume based on that, that the knife/machine used to slice the loaf of bread was cleaned or lubricated with the oil and upon contact with a relatively hot loaf, would scorch the oil and leave a trail inside of the loaf.

  7. trillium says:

    Mineral oils (which are in some cases considered food grade) can leave a black residue. My guess is either due to carbon or oxidation.

  8. EmperorOfCanada says:

    “However, on rare occasions, if a loaf is missed or too much oil is applied, there is no health hazard of the bread being toxic in any way”

    I’m sorry.. did they just say on rare occasions there is no health hazard of the bread being toxic?

  9. WiglyWorm must cease and decist says:

    @EmperorOfCanada: Yeah that sentence was poorly written. OR it was designed to look poorly written while saying that it was harmless as long as it’s only ingested rarely. Oh no! I left my tin foil hat at home, too. :)

  10. homerjay says:

    @timmus: Boy, there’s no pleasing you, is there?
    I think you’ve become jaded.

  11. HungryGrrl says:

    Wouldn’t dark colored food safe oil be easier to track if it got on food than clear oil, though?

    If it had been clear oil this loaf would have been eaten.

  12. Company did pretty much as projected. Customer got coupons for free product.


  13. strider_mt2k says:

    @Corporate-Shill: Agreed.
    They can blame whatever they want as long as I’m compensated for the screw up.

  14. amyschiff says:

    @Corporate-Shill: agreed. Only thing interesting about the story is the picture.

  15. Preyfar says:

    If the loaf don’t fit… you must acquit.

  16. Draconianspark says:

    @HungryGrrl: If the loaf would have been eaten, nobody would experience any more ill effect than one would taking half a teaspoon of mineral oil.

  17. SybilDisobedience says:

    I’ll reserve judgment until OP actually receives her coupons, but so far the company’s not looking too bad. It’s not like they accused OP of sullying the delicious bread herself or anything.

  18. Raziya says:

    Oh jeez guys, they are doing the right thing and compensating her. Technically, she could have just gone to the damn store and got a refund. But now she could do that AND get a free loaf of bread.

    Grumpy-pants, the lot of you!

  19. dustincimino says:

    @timmus: The oil could have been burnt while cooking.

  20. eelmonger says:

    @EmperorOfCanada: Yeah, that sentence needs a semicolon instead of a comma.

  21. Keavy_Rain says:

    Who cares if its edible or not it just looks sick.

  22. settsu says:

    Once again, an industrial food-like item breaks the fourth wall. If that black streak grossed you out, wait until you read the ingredients on your so-called food. Think about the fact you are consuming some-“thing” that stays “fresh” ten times longer than it would naturally.

    I’m not trying to get all righteous here, but compare that with the bread I buy with a co-op from a local bakery for $2/loaf. There are five ingredients – that are in my kitchen right now – in their Honey Whole Wheat. The only bread that tastes better is homemade. You buy multiple loaves, freeze extras, and, because there’s no manufactured chemicals, after defrosting in the fridge they taste as good as the day they were bought.

  23. XianZomby says:

    @dustincimino: I think they slice the bread after the bread has cooked, not before. Still — no suspicion here. No suspicion beforehand either. We all knew it was some kind of oil or grease from the food manufacturing equipment.

  24. homerjay says:

    @amyschiff: @strider_mt2k: @Corporate-Shill: Hey now. We’re always asking Ben & Co. to post follow-ups on stories. This is a follow-up.

    @dustincimino: Typically bread is baked BEFORE its sliced. :)

  25. homerjay says:

    @strider_mt2k: Hey, what are you doing on this side of the Gawker??? Back to Giz with you! :)

  26. DH405 says:

    Fair enough. Mistake, apology, retribution.

  27. Hulapop says:

    By the look of that black streak, the substance spilled or dripped onto the loaf before it was baked. Fresh bread cannot be sliced while it is hot. A slicer coated with oil would have saturated crust more then the inside. the edges look normal and there is no black. This looks like it was contaminated, unnoticed, then treated like a normal loaf.

  28. Hulapop says:

    also, the substance might have been an ingredient in a different style loaf (olive?)that was left over from the previous batch. I wouldn’t eat it though.

  29. Imhotep says:

    Thank goodness she didn’t buy a loaf of their Black Rye bread. That schmutz would’ve been invisible then.

  30. nardo218 says:

    @timmus: “Food grade oil” is clear. This stuff is black. This explanation gets an F, or at least an I for incomplete.

    Things like dirt, flour, etc stick to oil.

    I worked in the deli next to the bakery at Whole Foods and often chatted up the bakery girls (cuz they were cute). I didn’t bother reading the first article, I knew it was something on the slicer.

  31. And the first to solve the mystery was… nursethalia! Congratulations! Please enjoy your prize basket full of nothing.

    Honorable mention: AlCzervic, who also attributed it to oil on the blades.

  32. @settsu: Oooh, five ingredients. Very good. Although I shop at mainstream groceries, I’m always on the lookout for a baguette with four (flour*, water, yeast, salt). That’s all that belongs in a baguette. H-E-B has one.

    * I’m willing to let “enriched” flour slide.

  33. Angryrider says:

    Ugh, oil? More like Crude oil.

  34. Concerned_Citizen says:

    @Keavy_Rain: “Who cares if its edible or not it just looks sick.” That is exactly what is wrong with people. Just because you say it looks sick doesn’t make it bad, unsafe, or wrong. He should have just ate the bread or returned it.

  35. Imhotep says:

    @Concerned_Citizen: OR he should’ve just eaten the bread, THEN returned it.

  36. howie_in_az says:

    I’m surprised she wasn’t charged extra due to the ever increasing cost of oil these days.

  37. ZekeSulastin says:

    @settsu: Not to be an ass, but the moment you say “not to be a(n) _____” you send a red flag to the readers that you are about to be _____.

    Yes, I know that makes me an ass by my own rule ;)

  38. Sundermania says:


    I wish other companies would try this with ANY complaint.

    “Don’t worry, that was a food grade screw you found in your tuna fish”