Thursday, July 01, 2010
Food, Inc. is a 2009 American documentary film directed by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Robert Kenner. The film examines corporate farming in the United States, concluding that the meat and vegetables produced by agribusiness have many hidden costs and are unhealthy and environmentally-harmful. The film is narrated by Michael Pollan and Eric Schlosser. The documentary generated extensive controversy in that it was heavily criticized by large American corporations engaged in industrial food production.
The film's first segment examines the industrial production of meat (chicken, beef, and pork), calling it inhumane and economically and environmentally unsustainable. The second segment looks at the industrial production of grains and vegetables (primarily corn and soy beans), again labeling this economically and environmentally unsustainable. The film's third and final segment is about the economic and legal power of the major food companies, such as food libel laws, whose livelihoods are based on supplying cheap but contaminated food, the heavy use of petroleum-based chemicals (largely pesticides and fertilizers), and the promotion of unhealthy food consumption habits by the American public.
The 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 the environment. There are bigger-breasted chickens, perfect beef-steak, herbicide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but in the same time, there also have a new strains of E. coli—the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. And widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults.