Prison isn't supposed to be a walk in the park, or in the case of food, a bowlful of cherries. While we've been enjoying fancy foods made by prisoners, the prisoners themselves are subjected to some pretty disgusting dinners. For some inmates, however, eating while incarcerated can become a near torturous affair when their access to a decent meal is taken away. If this sounds familiar, it's because your parents also threatened this same punishment anytime they sent you to your room without dinner. The difference is, they knew you'd have a decent breakfast to wake up to.
The same can't be said for prisoners who have been subjected to one of the worst foods to come out of the correctional industry (or any industry, really): Nutraloaf. But thanks to a new round of reforms in New York, the state has said "no more." Also known as "Disciplinary Loaf," the mashed and baked brick was mostly reserved for prisoners in solitary who had already lost their privileges, but continued to have disciplinary issues when already in confinement.
Used in many facilities across the country with varying recipes, in New York prisons the foul-tasting foodstuff was made from flour, milk, yeast, salt, potatoes, carrots, margarine and a bunch of sugar, which was added, apparently, to help it all choke down a bit easier. Oh, and it came with a side of cabbage. They say the punishment should fit the crime, so unless any of these criminals have been creating menu items for Guy's American Kitchen & Bar, then Nutraloaf is definitely cruel and unusual.
In some cases, prisoners had subsist on nothing but Nutraloaf for up to 14 days, and many would choose to go hungry rather than eat the dreaded non-bread. Even the worst behaving inmates will now get a standard meal of bread, American cheese, eggs or lunchmeat, and fresh fruit. Not great, but hey, that’s pretty much a Lunchable!
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