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Small print shows where food comes from.

Smaller print explains what food factories add to improve shelf life.

You need good shelf life when you ship long distance.

A three year expiration date on food might be something to skip for dinner.

If you know people who identify as ‘foodies’ you’ve heard about the fresh food movement, the farm to table movement, the organic movement.

Movement is key here.

Bad food weakens movement. Old food leaves out important nutrient movement.

The fresher the food, the better the charge in your life battery. No one argues that point, but they do argue how to do it, and what level of freshness constitutes fresh, natural, and organic.

The top image shows what looks like snack brands, but it’s more.

So whether you’re looking to stock up on anything from orange soda to latte-flavored potato chips, Mondelez, Kraft, Coca-Cola, Nestlé, PepsiCo, P&G, Johnson & Johnson, Mars, Danone, General Mills, Kellogg’s, and Unilever own just about everything you could hope to buy. It seems that six degrees of separation theory has been proven after all, if only because we all drink Diet Coke every now and then.

It paints a grim picture until you see a way for the rest of us to survive without the food corporations and industrial food production.

Does it matter where food comes from?

Factory farms do the job of delivering food on the table, but at what cost?

There’s a reason cheap food costs what it does.

An equation of land, product, equipment, and labor is part of the cost.

If we are what we eat, and truly believe it, then there’s little wonder why there’s so much depression and mood swings and bad attitudes.

Look at these pigs for clue. Not a happy bunch, and maybe that doesn’t matter when the bacon’s in the pan Sunday morning.

The cognitive abilities of pigs, combined with their acute sensory perception, means that pigs are extremely curious individuals who love to explore their environment. Yet Fair Oaks pigs spend their entire lives completely deprived of intellectual or physical stimuli, never touching a blade of grass, never hearing birds, wind, or crickets, never rooting through earth, never experiencing a moment of sunlight.

Once pregnant, Pig Adventure’s sows spend nearly 4 months in these barren stalls, day after day and night after night, with no stimulation or environmental enrichment. It’s impossible to miss the utter dejection and hopelessness of these intelligent animals.

Hopeless dejection may not be contagious, but a picture burns an image into memory.

These sows get nothing but the maddening monotony of confinement and environmental deprivation, conditions which are proven to create profound emotional and mental disturbance in pigs.

When I read about emotional and mental disturbance in pigs while I’m slow cooking ribs, I don’t like it.

There’s an unmistakable creep factor, but an opposite factor is loose on the land.

Farmers know where food comes from.

I’ve written about Joel Salatin and Polyface Farms in Virginia a few times and emailed them links. They put my post on their facebook wall.

The most read was How To Polyface Farm Your Life.

My favorite from an experience point of view was visiting that Virginia farm and seeing an outstanding man in his field.

Recently I listened to a podcast, a farm to table talk.

Joel Salatin is the most famous farmer in the US and he’s becoming a global celebrity too. The Sustainable Food Trust hears Joel’s recommendations for the the future of Food at the “True Cost of American Food Conference”. He shares his wisdom for caring consumers, other farmers, and even Grandparents. Featured in films and author of 10 books, this is a conversation for our times. @susfoodtrust

After you hear the Salatin interview you might wonder why food production decision makers don’t pay more attention.

They will when more people ask where food comes from and shop accordingly.

About David Gillaspie
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