Pentagon Warns Poppy-Seed Bagels Are a Threat to National Security

Top brass says the dreaded bagel or muffin, could contain enough opiates for soldiers to flunk drug tests.
Images via Getty and Wikimedia Commons.

The latest enemy threatening U.S. soldiers is the feared poppy-seed, known bagel and bread variant, according to a memo from a senior Pentagon official.

In a letter to troops earlier in February, Gilbert Cisneros Jr., the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, sent a “warning” about the potential failure of drug tests if soldiers consumed too many poppy-seeds—as some varieties could contain trace amounts of morphine and codeine due to agricultural practices. 


Apparently, something as simple as a poppy-seed bagel or (in the case of the fictional Elaine Benes on Seinfeld) a poppy-seed muffin, could lead to soldiers flunking drug tests with “codeine positive urinalysis” results, which according to Cisneros, undermines the “Department's ability to identify illicit drug use.”

Cisneros told troops to refrain from eating all poppy-seed products altogether, until further notice and more Pentagon research could be done to solve the problem. 

“Out of an abundance of caution, I find protecting Service members and the integrity of the drug testing program requires a warning to avoid poppy seeds,” he said. “The Military Departments are hereby directed to notify Service members to avoid consumption of all poppy seeds to include food products and baked goods containing poppy seeds.”

The memo did not make any mention of the geopolitical landmine that is Montreal vs. New York bagels.