Monday, March 15, 2010

Food Inc.

Every time I talk about our skewed food system, somebody suggests I should watch "Food Inc", Robert Kenner and Eric Schlosser's documentary about where our food comes from. So, I finally watched it the other night while having dinner, which, by the way, is probably not the best way to enjoy a film that shows your meat being processed.

A few days ago I posted the chart about where our food subsidy money goes, versus what we should be eating, and "Food Inc" covers that subject to some extent. More alarming, though, is the revelation that our food supply is controlled by only a few huge corporations with monopoly power, which our anti-trust laws are supposed to prevent. Monsanto, for instance, sells 90% of the soybean seed in the US, which is a market share Microsoft can't even dream of.

Where is the FTC? Bought and paid for by the corporations, as is the FDA and USDA, particularly under the Bush administration, where lobbyists were hired to oversee the industries who paid them previously. Any wonder then why we have had so many outbreaks of e coli? While I am sure that the Obama has replaced the Bush lobbyists with more scientific leaders, I am not sure if inspections at packing plants have been increased, and certainly nothing has been done to change our ass-backwards farm programs.

"Food Inc." makes clear that most of our food is not grown, it is manufactured. Animals in huge feedlots who never eat the foods they were meant to, industrial corn turned into all the ingredients on the side of the cereal box. As our health care costs march us toward national bankruptcy, with no help in site, we need also be aware of the effect our food policy has on our health care costs.

Okay, writing this has bummed me out. Anyone got a deep fried Twinkie?

If you have Netflix, you can watch "Food Inc." on your computer. For more info on the movie and other food stuff, check out the Food Inc. web site.

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