Have you read Fast Food Nation or seen the movie (loosely based on the book)? John and I watched the ‘vie a couple of nights ago and dang, friends, I’m having a hard time shaking off some of those images. Which is the point, of course. And wouldn’t you know we’d had burgers for dinner that very night? Uh, one wouldn’t want to eat a burger then watch that movie, oh no. The feedlot and slaughter-house scenes are not just deeply sad but truly nauseating; I’m still queasy. I’ve mentioned the book The Omnivore’s Dilemma before (I highly recommend it), and this movie of course brought it to mind again. Mass industrial food production is a seriously flawed process, man, it’s depressing as hell. We are so far removed from the sources of the foods we eat – I’m not judging, I’m lulled into complacency too – we’ve become comfortable with it all being invisible to us. But deadly E. coli and dangerous salmonella poisonings sure get our attention, and reveal the deep cracks in the system. I look forward to more and more access to locally and sustainably grown foods – CSA (community supported agriculture) shares (like the LaFinca one I buy for the summer) are one way. Shopping farmer’s markets are another. Just being aware is important. Sure, movies like Fast Food Nation can come off preachy (and this movie does; the book is supposed to be riveting), but I’ll tell you what – it’s important to understand the reality of our industrial food production system, even if you don’t want to see it. It’s nothing less than the food we eat and feed our families.
(Note: I’m not becoming a vegetarian, but meat has been repulsive to me since I watched it – it really had an impact on me. And fast food (which I don’t eat much anyhow)? Let’s just say that my stomach lurched at the sight of a McDonald’s today, no lie. Whew. Despite all that – and because of it – I highly recommend the book or movie.)