3 MAY 1940, Page 18

Dangerous Purity

A suggestively paradoxical epigram was made to me the other day by a distinguished man of science and (with the proviso that it has no moral reference!) I may be allowed to quote it. We were discussing food in war-time, and he said, "Nothing is so foul as purity." The whiteness of bread sacrifices savour and sustenance. Cider is robbed of its full taste because the public insists on unclouded brightness. Even olive oil is spoilt by needless purification. Year by year it is being proved by science that purification robs a number of foods of necessary ingredients, sometimes virtually intangible and invisible. The synthetic product and the much Purified natural product both miss essentials. The just moral seems to be : use flour made from the newly invented milling process.