Commodity Crops Essay

Commodity Crops Essay

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When you walk into a grocery store, you have the option to buy two kinds of food: subsidized and unsubsidized. The subsidized (and usually unhealthy) foods appear to be cheaper, and thus people purchase them in order to save money. However, subsidizing the commodity crops, that make the unhealthy foods cheaper, is not how the government should be spending our tax dollars. As a result of paying taxes, we have essentially paid the government to see lower prices of the unhealthy food in the grocery store aisle. If you add up all the costs associated with the unhealthy foods, you will find that they no longer cost significantly less than their healthier and more nutritious counterparts. Commodity crops should no longer be subsidized because subsidized commodity crops are driving down the price of unhealthy foods. In order to convince people to purchase healthy food, the unhealthy food needs to sell at the price that it actually costs, not at a subsidized price.
The main reason why unhealthy foods appear to be so cheap and affordable is that the government is subsidizing the cost of the commodity crops that are used in the production of “junk food”. The most common subsidized commodity crops are “corn, soybeans, wheat, and rice” (Pollan 601). These subsidized commodity crops then make their way into the unhealthy food that is sold for little cost. After World War II, the government began to subsidize farmers for all the grains (a commodity crop) they could produce (601). Because the farmers were receiving money from the federal government, they could afford to sell their grains for less than it cost them to grow the grains (601). The government originally started the subsidies because they wanted the commodity crops to be mass-produce...

... middle of paper ...

...tied to a decrease in the cost of unhealthy food. This means the government is subsidizing unhealthy food. By subsidizing the unhealthy food, the government is essentially making the unhealthy food the more appealing and practical option. In order to convince people to buy the healthier foods, the unhealthy foods cannot appear to cost less. By stopping the subsidies, the government would be helping Americans take a step in the healthier and more nutritious direction.

Works Cited

Gad, Viola. "20 Twinkies a Day in Junk-Food Commodity Subsidies." VTDigger. Vermont Journalism Trust, 16 July 2013. Web. 03 Dec. 2013. .
Pollan, Michael. “Farmer in Chief.” Seeing & Writing 4. Eds. Donald MQuade and McQuade, Christine. New York: Bedford/St. Martins, 2010. 597-614. [Print].

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