Some Things About Food to Remember

While I’ve been known to be a little strident when writing about the evils of various food corporations, I do try to be reasonable when possible. Below is a list of things I try to keep in mind when talking about food.

  • There are some foods that do not need the “organic” label – I’ll admit that my evidence to back up this belief is minimal. But I believe that there are some produce out there being grown whose farming practices do little to no harm to the environment, regardless of whether they follow organic standards or not. If I had to take a guess as to which products, I’d presume those that are naturally delicate (such as raspberries) or those who popularity is so small that industrial farming hasn’t found a way to mass produce them into a profitable enterprise (at a guess – arugula).
  • Not every mass produced piece of food is bad for you – I’m referring to both taste and/or nutritional content. I’ve heard people talk of great fondness for Funyuns and Coke with cane sugar. With careful selection, people can can live a healthy life while eating foods primarily from the freezer section. My point here is that mass produced foods can add value to ones life, if they know where to look and what to look for.
  • There are tasty fast food restaurants out there – Just ask any fan of In-N-Out Burger.Heck, even McDonalds made good fries at one point in their life (tho’ those days are long gone).
  • The world of four star restaurants have precious little affect upon the everyday cook or family – While it’s fun to talk about Keller, Batali, and Achatz (who could use some of your goodwill and good thoughts), at the end of the day, home cooking has as much to do with 4 star chefs as driving to work has to do with Formula 1 drivers.
  • When talking of ethics in food production (organic foods, local foods, humane treatment of animals), the taste of the product should play into the equation. – However, it’s not a coincidence that most food produced organically or humanely often taste far better than those produced industrially.
  • Every food purchase is a political act – This should be self explanatory, but needs to be repeated so that it’s understood. Whether you spend money on a three dollar latte, a two dollar bag of corn chips, or a one dollar bag of fresh tomatoes from the farmer’s market, you are telling the producer of that product that not only do you approve of their practices, you want them to profit for implementing those said practices. That fact that you may be ignorant of how these folks operate in the field, in the factory, or in the offices is often inconsequential, because your dollar ends up in their bank account.