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Our Food Supply & Corporate America

What You Need To Know About The Foods We Eat!

Posted by jmboiardi - October 7th, 2014

Disclaimer: The following article is the sole opinion of the author. It is based on personal research on the Internet and from the films referenced in this article. This situation is descriptive of the food industry of the U.S. and may or may not apply to other countries. This article is for informational purposes only and it is up to the reader to formulate their own opinions.


Background Information & References

If you frequent the Internet, you have no doubt come across numerous articles espousing the benefits of this type of diet versus another or this type of food versus another. It can be very confusing and for the average consumer leave them with doubts or disillusionment as to how or what to eat for optimum health.


This situation is more often than not caused by the various interest groups defending their turf against information counter to their beliefs. It happens on both sides which is why one has to look at the available information out there and determine for themselves what they want to believe.

Before I go further, the viewpoints I will share in this article are my beliefs based on the information provided in the following films. These films are available for rent on streaming sites like iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, and Vudu:

  1. Fed Up
  2. GMO OMG
  3. Food, Inc.
  4. Fat Sick and Nearly Dead

The Food Industry & The Government

The first thing one must understand about the food industry in the U.S. is that it is not only a very large for-profit industry but also it has a large lobbying contingent within Congress. A Lobbyist’s sole goal is to ensure Congress passes laws and regulations favorable to their constituents and help defeat laws and regulations that would be detrimental.


The biggest challenge the food supply faces today is meeting the world demand for food – both within the U.S and for all the countries where we export food. As such, the industry depends on a few things to make this possible and affordable: food science and technology and government subsidies. In the U.S., the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) is responsible for not only monitoring the food industry for food safety and compliance to government regulations but also recommending the dietary recommendations and requirements for Americans. Here lies the main issue. There is an immediate conflict of interest because one government agency can’t freely recommend dietary guidelines if these conflict with the major food industries they oversee. Also, the government provides substantial financial subsidies to not only keep our farming products price competitive globally but also to keep farmers in business during lean times or when they are not harvesting. This is a large portion of the voting population in Middle America (the “Grain Belt”) with a lot of clout in Congress.


The second issue is around food science. New technologies like Genetically Modified Organisms or GMO’s have been developed. GMOs make crops more resistant to pests and certain pesticides and make the yield per acre larger than normal. While these intentions seem admirable, we have no long-term information on the affects in humans of consuming genetically modified foods. The biggest industries who rely on GMO technology and who receive the biggest government subsidies to keep the food affordable like corn, wheat, and soy are also the biggest lobbyists in Congress. The USDA has no incentive to “bite the hand that feeds them” if any research is uncovered that claims that GMO food is dangerous to human health.


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To complicate matters further, the corn, wheat, and soy industries supply the majority of the ingredients for processed foods in America. Even though there is new mounting evidence that the low fat, low cholesterol, high carbohydrate dietary guidelines that the USDA has been pushing since the early 1960’s are the main contributing cause to the major diseases today, the USDA has not changed its stance. Why you may ask? Because a low sugar, low man-made sugar, and low processed carbohydrate diet would significantly hurt the corn, wheat, and soy industries in America. Even the beef industry got on the defensive when the USDA wanted to recommend less consumption of red meat in the diet.


In Conclusion

The bottom line is the only person looking out for your health and has your health as a top priority is you. Big business and the government are more concerned with their own agendas and protecting the interests of those whom they support. Some may say, “What’s wrong? The food we eat is good and safe and we are living longer lives now so it can’t be all bad.” All one needs to do is see the statistics on how dramatically obesity, heart disease, cancer, Type 2 diabetes, dementia, and other diseases have been on the rise since the 1960’s. While new medications do help us live longer, is that really living when you need a drug to stay alive and/or continue your bad eating habits?


The food industry has an army of lawyers and scientists whose sole goal is to discredit, hide, or prosecute those who have studies, theories, or guidelines contrary to their beliefs and current government policies. It is not a blatant “evil empire/Big Brother” type of scenario but it occurs behind the scenes and on a daily basis. This is why for every study or finding on the Internet there are “peer reviews” which often conflict with or discredit the findings. The industry relies on uninformed consumers who rely on the government to tell them what to eat and what is healthy. While this is an important and admirable role and most government agencies and private corporations have good intentions, the bottom line is profits and votes come first.


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At the end of the day, if a product or law/guideline will bring in the most money and the most votes, then that is the one that will be pushed – regardless of the side effects. To protect yourself, be informed, do the research, and don’t accept everything at face value initially regardless of the source.

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MEMBER COMMENTS

crood

Great article John!

 

I was already very well aware of this, and it is needed to inform more people. So i am always happy to find bits and bytes like this article here.

 

Attention - rant incoming ...

 

Most people are still, even now in 2014, unaware of how much the world 'already' has become a pure business model of which only the richest few, make any 'real' profit. And what all is done on a daily basis to reach this goal.

 

By now it goes even so far that companies have put patents on their genetically altered seeds, and have them copyright protected. Sounds harmless, but means that they can sue anyone misusing these for copyright infrigment..

 

Needless to say that these seeds when you buy them are "licensed" for "1 x planting" only ... does the bell ring already?

 

It forces Farmers to buy new seeds every planting season instead of buying them once and then replanting with the resulting seeds. Doing so forces them to sell their crops faster, plant more and be more vulenarble to lowprice offers from related companies, in order to even make enough profit to buy the next load of seeds.

 

Now farmers are being pulled to court and being sued for copyright infrigment, because the have been doing a completely natural thing.. using resulting seeds from harvested crops to plant the next field. And all this from seeds they legally bought.

 

In the beginning farmers still won a case here and there, but by now these companies have set up petitions to alter laws suiting their needs and goals and are winning over the farmers who can barely put up a fight.

 

Same goes for the way how food is "designed" when it comes to preprocessed foods. The addition of sugar, salts, fats, and chemical substances only for the sole purpose to hook you up and make you buy again.

 

And the ones trying to avoid this and buy wholesome foods / vegetables, seeds, fruits etc .. have to face that even the potato, grown in soil, they had just bought in a supermarket, or even directly from a farmer, has been 'designed & altered'.

 

Awareness is a first step to achieve 'change' in my opinion. If people change their view and buy more un-altered products, the industry will change because they want the money. Unfortunately it's easier said than done, as the altered versions are much cheaper in that case, and people have very little money to experiement or go for what they want these days.

 

A few sources - there are many more when you search on the internet:

 

- Link: genetically-modified-seed-patent-lawsuit

- Link: reversing-roles-organic-farmers-sue-monsanto-over-gmo-seeds

- Organic Concsumers on GMO Patents

- and another interesting one: Link: do-seed-companies-control-gm-crop-research

Scott_Herman

This article is great @jmboiardi, it's so true how the government manipulates data.  It's all about the Benjamin's baby!!!

jmboiardi

Lol.......as Metallica would say, "Sad but true"....

Scott_Herman

Side note... "For whom the bell tolls" came on my ipod while lifting... took me to power level over 9000!!!!

jmboiardi

I remember listenting to Metallica during the "Kill Them All" album and when Cliff Burton was still alive. I even remember hearing early Metallica when Dave Mustaine was still with them :-)

>>>>>>