An anonymous reader wrote to us about this Zubrowka label as follows:
Free Range Vodka?
As if there weren’t already enough confusion with health food terms like organic, natural, cage-free, and free-range, we’ve found a product that extends the health craze to alcoholic beverages. Meet Zubrowka, bottled with “neutralized” buffalo grass.
What exactly is neutralized buffalo grass? Well, your guess is as good as ours. But if one were to assume that by neutralizing it, it is rendered somewhat inactive or less potent, that begs the question, why bother adding the ingredient in the first place?
So, the purpose of adding a neutralized ingredient is definitely curious, but the label’s image may give us some clues. The image of a large, muscular, and almost fearsome bison dominates the label. One could assume the message here is that by ingesting the very essence of what these imposing creatures thrive on, the drinker would too be infused with virility and strength.
In fact, there is a good reason it’s neutralized. Real bisongrass raises serious health concerns as suggested by Bill Dowd here. Zubrowka is native to Poland and goes back at least 500 years.
Been drinking this for the last several years in the UK and never realized that Bison Grass contained a dangerous substance. Anyway, the label in the UK is completely different, but it seems to be the same company – for an example, see http://www.waitrosewine.com/230220789/Product.aspx