Eco-Documentary Movie: Lifting the Veil on Food by Michael Pollan

LUX movie goers, a new eco-documentary is geared to hit theaters June 12th in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco called Food, Inc. Authors of Omnivore’s Dilemma, Michael Pollan, and Fast Food Nation, Eric Schlosser, have teamed up with director Robert Kenner to create this 93-minute film that promises to transform the way you ‘look at dinner.’

Educational, shocking and inspiring this film aims to ‘lift the veil’ on the food industry and expose us to information that’s never been seen before about the food we buy and consume. Have you ever thought about how the food we purchase gets to our local markets? Or, is it even possible to tell the difference between a genetically modified tomato and a natural one? These are only some of the questions that Food, Inc. covers.

Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of E. coli—the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults. –

Food, Inc. has been in the making for the last six years and is intended to equip us with the knowledge to make decisions ‘beyond the veil’ of swift marketing plows. American farming has completely transformed in the last 50 years in the United States. Here are some quick facts about the food industry directly from Food, Inc.:

• In the 1970s, the top five beef packers controlled about 25% of the market. Today, the top four control more than 80% of the market.
• In the 1970s, there were thousands of slaughterhouses producing the majority of beef sold. Today, we have only 13.
• In 1998, the USDA implemented microbial testing for salmonella and E. Coli 0157h7 so that if a plant repeatedly failed these tests, the USDA could shut down the plant. After being taken to court by the meat and poultry associations, the USDA no longer has that power.
• In 1972, the FDA conducted 50,000 food safety inspections. In 2006, the FDA conducted only 9,164.
• During the Bush administration, the head of the FDA was the former executive VP of the National Food Processors Association.
• During the Bush administration, the chief of staff at the USDA was the former chief lobbyist for the beef industry in Washington.
• 70% of processed foods have some genetically modified ingredient.
• The average chicken farmer invests over $500,000 and makes only $18,000 a year.

Although some of the facts might be hard to swallow, the movie does end on a positive note educating us on what we can do to make a difference in creating a ‘healthy food system’ and reminding us that our consumer power counts at every breakfast, lunch and dinner.

This film is definitely something worth seeing to ‘nourish your knowledge’ on the industrialization of our food and as always we encourage you to discover your own voice on this topic.

To learn more about the film, visit Food, Inc.

Tagged in: new york city, los angeles, san francisco, production, food industry, eric schlosser, fast food nation, documentary film, robert kenner, michael pollan, food, inc., june 12, 2009, ominivore's dilemma,

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