This jar of peanut butter costs $761 and you aren't supposed to eat it

BB no-prize contest: Write TV commercial jingle lyrics for "Standard Reference Material No. 2387" peanut butter.

This peanut butter isn’t actually intended for your mouth (rude, I know), but to be fed into laboratory gadgets like gas chromatographs and mass spectrometers. Smart people then use it to establish an industry-wide standard to which similar food products can be compared.

Oh good, here’s that $761 jar of peanut butter you asked for

Notable Replies

  1. I've sometimes thought that computer programming is a desperate effort to realize the fantasy of Platonic ideas in a universe that simply doesn't work that way.

    And then here's the NIST, with the Platonic ideal jar of peanut butter on a shelf.

  2. Peanut butter, peanut butter.... we have the most expensive peanut butter!
    You can't spread it, you can't eat it, you can't make a PBJ.
    Just look at the sad label all the night and all the day.
    We think you'd like it but we're not allowed to say
    Whether it tastes better than Jif or Skippy or Peter Pan...
    Just be glad we didn't put it in a can!
    [voiceover] Sold only in government testing facilities. Not for internal use.

  3. Jorpho says:

    this stuff is perfectly regular peanut butter.

    I would hope that it might be produced according to some rigorous standard and subsequently subjected to a battery of tests to ensure uniformity within a carefully-defined statistical framework. But it also wouldn't surprise me if, in the end, it turned out to be ordinary Skippy with a huge mark-up. (They probably save the other stuff for the molecular gastronomists.)

    Peanut butter can be so mysterious.

  4. Gosh, I'd hate to see the price for the Organic jars.

  5. The plastic ones.
    The glass jars are the inorganic ones.

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