I said that I wouldn't write again until the Wonder Bread molds, but last night my husband and I viewed the documentary Food, Inc. at a theater in Savannah, GA. The eager audience filled TWO theaters!! Having read what other foodies have written about the movie, I wasn't expecting to learn many new tidbits about our corrupt food system. Well, I was wrong.
First, what impacted me the most were the visuals. It's one thing to read about the food industry in books and another to watch YouTube videos, but it's another to watch and hear simultaneously a compelling story well presented. The impression was deep.
I am well aware of the horrors happening to animals in slaughterhouses and CAFOs as well as to the crops in the fields with toxic chemicals, but what I was less aware of, and what hit me the hardest, is the welfare of factory farm workers, meatpackers and non-Monsanto, independent farmers. We have reached the point of absolutely destroying innocent human lives with our ignorant food choices.
It is imperative that as many citizens as possible see this movie, read the book or study from the website. All the information is available, you just have to make the effort and have the desire to learn.
Here's an example of the human atrocities: One of the largest meat processing plants (Smithfield? I don't recall specifically) recruits illegal labor from across the US/Mexico border. They will use these impoverished people for grotesque labor practices (slaughter, corps dis-assembly) that no one else is capable of or willing to do. This company has exhausted their regional US labor pool.
Then these illegal immigrants who were recruited and paid by a US company are then, after about 10 years, instantaneously deported at a rate of 15 per day per an agreement between the company and the immigration office as to not disrupt the rate of production (too many illegal immigrants deported at a time slows production). WHAT!? The immigration offices are supporting (and basically supplying) this mega-corporation with illegal laborers?
Most meat produced in this country is processed by three or four processing plants. If you have a political position against illegal immigration, you may want to consider boycotting meat as a vote against the companies who employ dishonest, abhorent and illegal labor practices.
These poor people are wooed, used and then disposed of as if they were mere objects. Eating meat that comes from grocery stores and restaurants and not specified as from a small, local farmer supports this human atrocity. More can be learned at Blood, Sweat and Fears.
Your fast food or supermarket burger is linked to a woman being plucked out of her trailer in the middle of the night by immigration agents, handcuffed and sent back to Mexico with no possessions but what is on her back.
Aren't we nicer people than this?
Do your homework. See the movie. Reduce your meat consumption. Here are 10 changes you can begin making right away.
Live Light, xo-C.
PS - I am very proud of my husband who resisted the wafting smell of popcorn and the habitual bag of peanut M&M's and instead enjoyed with me some cashews and dried goji berries during the film (xoxoCJG). My optimistic self was hoping that no one in the audience would choose to support the junk food industry by purchasing theater concessions. Boy, was I wrong! When will movie theaters begin selling respectable snacks...especially during a viewing of Food, Inc.???