Good Example Of Food Inc. Film Analysis Movie Review
Type of paper: Movie Review
Topic: Food, Customers, People, Business, Industry, Agriculture, Strawberry, California
Agriculture in the United States has been emulated by many countries across the world. The agricultural business produced greater quantity of foods on a smaller area of land and sold these foods at a very affordable cost compared to farmers of other countries. This may appear viable and advantageous to many, but many concerned consumers and activists find this situation odd and wrong. Environmental degradation, sick animals, unhealthy foods and health issues including diabetes and obesity are just some of the problems that accompany a centralized and mechanized system that promotes efficiency, affordable costs, and greater revenues. Food producers manoeuvre these activities to maximize profits and boost the economic condition of the country. As positive as it may seem, these advocacies have adverse effects on the people and the environment. Food Inc. offers legitimate facts concerning how food has transformed through the years. The documentary also focused on major businesses that presently are part of the food industry. Kenner revealed the hidden truth that is disguised from the consumers. The film hits on major emotional topics and what people can do to alter the process in the hope for a better food industry in the future.
Food Inc., a film by Robert Kenner, exposes the food industry of the United States. Based on the research by authors Michael Pollan and Eric Schlosser, the food industry placed more emphasis on profit than consumers’ health, workers’ safety, environmental security, and farmers’ livelihood. The filmmakers revealed the Orwellian underbelly that has been concealed from the consumers. They exposed how companies take control over the food supply of the country. Despite the fact that the organizations attempt to keep up the myth that our sustenance still originates from homesteads with red horse shelters and white picket fences, consumers’ foods are really raised on factory farms and manufactured in mega modern plants.
The growth of animals become rapid and is intended to fit the machines that butcher them. During the 50s, in Western Kansas, developments cater to cows more than people (Pollan, 2002). There were several cattle pens stretching on the horizon and each pen house 150 animals (Pollan, 2002). Despite these developments, Pollan (2002) cited how eating meat has been problematic during the past years. Less and less people ate meats because of health issues such as Mad Cow Disease. People also became greatly concerned with E. Coli contamination in feeds (Pollan, 2002).
In Food Inc., it was also revealed that tomatoes are produced to be transported without damaging and to stay appetizing for a considerable length of time. The system is very profitable, and Americans spend less on foods than any time in the recent past. Cattles are provided with sustenance that their bodies are not naturally intended to process, bringing about new strains of E. coli microbes, which sicken around 73,000 Americans yearly. Pollan (2002) claims that most cows in Kansas are no longer exposed to grasses. Modern means of increasing the number of cows at a faster rate has been applied. This poses a great threat to the environment. One of the reasons why cows no longer feed on grass is the fact that this process takes quite a while before they reach the slaughtered weight compared to cows that obtain a richer diet (Pollan, 2002).
Another main concern is the use of corns to feed livestock. Due to the high multiplication of prepared sustenance derived from corn, Americans are confronting pandemic levels of diabetes among adults and disturbing increments in corpulence, particularly among children. Startlingly, every last bit of it is going directly under the noses of the administration's governmental organizations, the FDA and the USDA.
The government and the agricultural industry are the ones that benefit most from this business. In California, agriculture is the largest industry (Schlosser, 1995). For many years, California led the United States in agricultural output. A lot of health conscious consumers have vegetables and fruits in their diet. The increasing demand for these kinds of foods has also caused an increased in the number of workers needed to cultivate them (Schlosser, 1995). The greater number of illegal immigrants in California has also given the agriculture industry the opportunity to hire these illegal immigrants for long hours of work at a very low wage (Schlosser, 1995). This system became advantageous in sustaining the agricultural industry of California.
California was known for its strawberry market. However, in the past, California did not always dominate the strawberry market (Schlosser, 1995). It was only between 1974 and 1994 that the production of strawberry tripled (Schlosser, 1995). Because of this, prices started to drop and the Americans increased their strawberry consumption. However, strawberries are also exposed to environmental and economic risks. Strawberries attract a broad range of pests. For growers not to lose profit during untoward circumstances, they had to cut down the costs of labor. This move is definitely against the law but the punishments for breaking such law are seldom applied. One of the approaches used by growers to reduce the cost of labor is by keeping laborers off the books. This is done to avoid paying workers’ compensation premium and unemployment taxes. This action led to reduced costs by 50% (Schlosser, 1995). Sharecroppers also violated the labor and federal law due to pressure to settle their debts (Schlosser, 1995). The growers also employ and fire workers whenever they want and as the need arises.
The film also exposed a revolving entry of officials from giant food companies all through Washington D.C. that has brought about an absence of oversight and enlightens how this broken political framework frequently works to the detriment of the consumers in the country. In the country's heartland, agriculturists were silenced and were reluctant to discuss what is going on to the country's sustenance supply for threats of lawsuits and retaliation from big companies.
The current laws are such that partnerships are permitted to patent seeds for harvests. Therefore, Monsanto, the previous concoction organization that made DDT and Agent Orange for ten years, has come across its protected quality in 90% of the country's soybean seeds. Ranchers are presently taboo to spare and reuse these seeds and must rather purchase new seed from Monsanto every season. Furnished with a group of representatives devoted to authorizing their seed licenses, Monsanto burns through millions consistently to research, scare and sue agriculturists - large portions of whom are monetarily not able to combat the enterprise. Food Inc. additionally acquaints the viewers with bold individuals who decline to vulnerably remain and do nothing. Some, in the same way as Gary Hirshberg of Stonyfield Farm and Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm, are discovering ways to work inside and outside the system to enhance the nature of the food supply. Others are bold people who have decided to take a stand, including Carole Morison, a chicken agriculturist; Moe Parr, a seed cleaner; and Barbara Kowalcyk, a promoter of wellbeing. Their stories, both lamentable and chivalrous, serve to show the level of responsibility and humanity it takes to combat the companies that control the food business.
In the desire of the giant companies to increase profit and convey a lot of foods and multiplying the number of animals in a short span of time, this implies that organizations will utilize destructive chemicals. Nonetheless, they utilize small amount of these chemicals to the products. Consumers are not mindful and are scarcely aware of what they eat. This unawareness basically permits organizations to exploit the consumers and use less expensive, better, yet more damaging procedures. It is essential to note that the producers endeavoured to meet delegates from Tyson, Perdue, Monsanto, and Smithfield, yet they all declined. Food Inc. represents the risks of a sustenance framework controlled by capable organizations that do not require people to witness, to censure, or to consider how foods are manufactured. The film uncovers how a basic process of raising livestock and growing crops was made complicated. It likewise reminds consumers that regardless of what have all the earmarks of being on occasion a miserable circumstance, people can still vote on this issue.
At the end of the documentary film, Kenner presented some ways on how people can alter and avert various food industries from doing wrongful acts to consumers. Kenner posits that people must purchase organic foods, own a garden, and be cognizant of where the food being consumed comes from. Kenner also emphasizes the importance of knowing the nutrients that the product contains particularly those products that are processed by giant food companies.
Pollan, M. (2002). Power Steer. Nytimes.com. Retrieved 7 April 2015, from http://www.nytimes.com/2002/03/31/magazine/power-steer.html
Schlosser, E. (1995). In the Strawberry Fields. The Atlantic. Retrieved 7 April 2015, from http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1995/11/in-the-strawberry-fields/305754/