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So what happens when parents are forced to make a vote for their children each and every meal? This is the dilemma that Jonathan Safran Foer is faced with, and what prompted his novel, Eating Animals. Perhaps one of the core issues explored is the American factory farm. Although it is said that factory farms are the best way to produce a large amount of food at an affordable price, I agree with Foer that government subsidized factory farms use taxpayer dollars to exploit animals to feed citizens meat produced in a way that is unsustainable, unhealthy, immoral, and wasteful. Foer also argues for vegetarianism and decreased meat consumption overall, however based on the facts it seems more logical to take baby steps such as encouraging people to buy locally grown or at least family farmed meat, rather than from the big dogs.
2 March 2011. Wenzel 8 Walsh, Bryan. “America’s Food Crisis and How to Fix It.” Time, Vol. 174, Is. 8, p. 30-37.
There are four main meatpacker companies that account for eighty percent of the entire industry. The meatpackers act as a middleman between the producer and the consumer. Since the majority of this industry is controlled by a few companies, this creates a problem because they act similar to a monopoly. Due to this monopolistic view, there is no free-flow of information throughout the supply chain and beef prices tend to be higher than they should. After the meatpackers have packed the beef, they sell it to retail stores, which in turn sell the meat to us, the consumer.
American society has grown so accustomed to receiving their food right away and in large quantities. Only in the past few decades has factory farming come into existence that has made consuming food a non guilt-free action. What originally was a hamburger with slaughtered cow meat is now slaughtered cow meat that’s filled with harmful chemicals. Not only that, the corn that that cow was fed with is also filled with chemicals to make them grow at a faster rate to get that hamburger on a dinner plate as quickly as possible. Bryan Walsh, a staff writer for Time Magazine specializing in environmental issues discusses in his article “America’s Food Crisis” how our food is not only bad for us but dangerous as well.
(2011, March 21). Fda food safety modernization act. . Retrieved from http://www.sfa.org/public_documents/Food_Safety_Presentation.pdf (10)Shiner, M. (2010, December 12). Senate oks food safety measure.
Yahoo Health. July 20, 2005: www.health.yahoo.com/ency/healthwise/tu6533 United States Food and Drug Administration. (2004, May). Agencies Work to Corral Mad Cow Disease. U. S. Food and Drug Administration.