Let Them Eat Real Food: Food, Inc.

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June 25, 2009 at 8:50 am

It is not such a far fetched assumption that if you are on this site and reading this, you’re well aware of the muddled, cluttered affair the American food system has become: a system often blamed for adversely impacting the environment, irresponsibly treating workers and animals and the high rates of type 2 diabetes and obesity among Americans.

Oops.

How the business of feeding people became the industrialized arrangement that stocks pantries across the country is the focal issue of Food, Inc., a Robert Kenner film featuring investigative foodie journalists Eric Schlosser, who co-produced the film, and local eating advocate Michael Pollan (who is given a “special contributor” credit).

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Now, if you have read Schlosser’s “Fast Food Nation” or Pollan’s “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” and “In Defense of Food”, the majority of the information presented in Food, Inc. is not new (the fact that the inexpensive crop of corn sneakily makes its way in one form or another into food products such as Heinz ketchup, the raising of abnormally large-breasted mutant chickens for consumption, subsequent ammonia rinsing of said chickens before becoming packaged mutant chicken breasts). It is, however, a powerful reminder that eating fresh, whole food should be an option for everyone, not just those willing or able to drive to Polyface Farm.

The film offers suggestions for individuals who are interested in creating change in the American food system—plant a garden, buy locally sourced ingredients whenever possible—but it’s clear that there is still a long, long way to go before a head of broccoli is less expensive to purchase than a Big Mac.

In Chicago, Food, Inc. can be seen at Landmark’s Century Centre Cinema, 2828 N. Clark St.

Visit the official Food, Inc. movie site at www.foodincmovie.com.

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