Glaxo Baby Food
Posted 23 September 2008 - 08:33 AM
Please note the PIN code in the FAREX ad! So it is not really "OLD" for some of us!!!! That would be the Farex squeezed unwillingly down the throats of baby nephews et. al. in the early 1960s, along with the dreaded Lactogen baby formula! The world might have come to an end if Lactogen was not available for a sickly child in those difficult days of shortage and short incomes. Then we grew up in mental age, adults included [especially] and realized it was all hokum, a ploy by multinationals to scare credulous Indians.
CFTRI, Mysore, in fact had, and has, prepared an infant formula solely out of barley fortified with necessary nutrient: it is complete, without needing any milk and supports excellent infant health. However, being the brainwashed ignorant beings that we are, we have no faith in our own excellent scientists, and continue to spend exorbitant amounts of money on infant formula. Sadly, where did I learn about this Indian invention? Only late in life, when I was able to access expensive Handbooks of Cereal Technology at Cornell! Very little scope to learn about what Indian scientists have achieved, when living in India!! About Indian fermented foods, or dairy. Or about anything wonderful and useful going on in Indian agriculture, period!
Or various Indian wheats. Since this is about Farex, farina, wheat, let me digress a tiny bit so that our readers might take home a little bit of information about Indian wheats and what is being lost, why and why they cannot be saved. Bread wheats fall into the Triticum aestivum group. These started off as a diploid variety, having a doubled set of chromosomes as is normal for most beings. Then they picked up a second set from a related grass and became an allo-tetraploid. Allo- meaning from a foreign source, because plants can also spontaneously double their chromossome count and become tetraploid that way. Then that allotetraploid picked up yet another set of chromosomes from a famous goatgrass, Aegilops, and we got our breadwheat, with very specific proteins forming a matrix in which starch grains are embedded and so forth. So this being, the most widespread wheat, is a hexaploid, or someone with 3 double sets of chromosomes, 6n the basic number.
Before all of this extensive evolution, there were other wheats, Triticum monococcum, Triticum dicoccum etc. whose names are self-descriptive. They are just the basic diploid type, and are variously called emmer, einkorn, spelt, farro, an are of slightly different types due to long selection in paticular areas. They may exhibit certain characteritics : sometimes the seed coat and the coat of the botanical wheat fruit are tightly fused, making the grain very hard to thresh or mill into flour. This tight fusion can reduce infection by many fungal pathogens. The minimal processing means that these wheats are consumed broken or whole. Very healthy in today's context: all the bran, fiber, nutrient-laden germ etc.
In India, the Southern and Western plateaus enjoy these types as "khapli" wheat. That is what they ae called in Maharashtra, although they are popular on the Karnataka plateau where they apparently are prized for uppuma. I have no first hand knowledge. Perhaps you, or Ravum, could make a few inquiries with your excellent informants? In the plateau regions, they would grow 2 crops a year. This has created problems because the leaf and stem rust fungus infects but not kill these ancient wheats. Winds carry the fungal urediospores, a form meant to waft long distances, to the Northern wheat growing areas just in time to wreak havoc. Now, a very terrifying form of stem rust is arriving from Africa. Our present wheat genetic base [the "Green Revolution" wheats] is so very narrow tha there is always cause for alarm. So there is astrong move to eliminate altogether the khapli wheats wherever they are to be found. Better safe than sorry, goes the reasoning. You cannot control possibility that someone will not be growing out of season crops. If there is NO KHAPLI, there will be NO DANGER from that side at least!!! This is the argument to make this ancient crop virtually extinct in Peninsular India!
These particular wheats essentially pre-date humankind, while the modern cultivars do not! They were domesticated from the many wild "goatgrasses" that bear edible seeds in the Fertile Crescent. Already, without intent, excelent indigenous drum wheats e.g. cv. Gangajali in Malda dstrict of West Bengal are functionally extinct in situ. Tha is, they are not being grown on large enough an area under the same conditions to be subjct to the pressures of Natural Selection and Farmer Selection and maintain their integrity as a landrace.
Indian barleys also have an equally compelling story. So your Farex advertisement, based as it is on a wheat cereal weaning formula, has many unexpected angles that can be explored. India is infinitely rich in narratives. There are so may sides of each issue waiting to be heard.
- Shakes1975 likes this
Posted 23 September 2008 - 09:25 AM
This one is really Old , the Glaxo Baby Food advertisement.
The Old is for Glaxo Baby food AD - Its from the 1910 - 1915 time frame.
Farex - This one , I had as a toddler as well , But preferred Cerelac (Much tastier - Wheat Flavor- didn't like any other flavors though!). I still dont mind garbbing a bite when I get the chance http://www.gourmetin...tyle_emoticons/default/smile.gif
Posted 23 September 2008 - 10:56 AM
Off-topic, but did you ever taste an expensive sweet called Lacto Bon-Bon that used to come in an oval, elongated tin? Quite delicious, crunchy center, with a chocolate covering (but I have experienced it only once or twice in my life so don't know where it was made)?