This Robert Kenner documentary, entitled: “Food, Inc.” is an unflattering look inside America’s corporate controlled food industry. The Magnolia Pictures film makes its debut at San Francisco, CA: Embarcadero Center Cinema 5, West Los Angeles, CA: Nuart Theatre, and the New York, NY: Film Forum on July 12 before moving through the rest of the country, starting June 19th.
Visit the “Food Inc.” website to view Food Inc. showtime schedule to find dates and times in your area.
“Food, Inc.” introduces viewers to brave people who refuse to stand by and do nothing. Some, like Stonyfield Farm’s Gary Hirshberg and Polyface Farm’s Joel Salatin, are finding ways to work around the system and improve the quality of America’s food.
Others are brave farmers, producers, and officials who have chosen to speak out, such as chicken farmer Carole Morison, seed cleaner Moe Parr and food safety advocate Barbara Kowalcyk. Their stories are heroic and moving, serving to demonstrate the level of humanity and commitment it takes to fight the corporations controling our food industry.
Eric Schlosser claims: “The enormous buying power of the fast food industry helped to transform the entire food production system of the United States. So even when you purchase food at the supermarket, you’re likely to be getting products that came from factories, feedlots and suppliers that emerged to serve the fast food chains.”
- 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.
- Prior to renaming itself an agrobusiness company, Monsanto was a chemical company that produced, among other things, DDT and Agent Orange.
- In 1996 when it introduced Round-Up Ready Soybeans, Monsanto controlled only 2% of the U.S. soybean market. Now, over 90% of soybeans in the U.S. contain Monsanto’s patented gene.
- Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas was an attorney at Monsanto from 1976 to 1979. After his appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice Thomas wrote the majority opinion in a case that helped Monsanto enforce its seed patents.
- The average chicken farmer invests over $500,000 and makes only $18,000 a year.
- 32,000 hogs a day are killed in Smithfield Hog Processing Plant in Tar Heel, N.C, which is the largest slaughterhouse in the world.
- The average American eats over 200 lbs. of meat a year.
- 30% of the land in the U.S. is used for planting corn.
- 70% of processed foods have some genetically modified ingredient.
- SB63 Consumer Right to Know measure requiring all food derived from cloned animals to be labeled as such passed the California state legislature before being vetoed in 2007 by Governor Schwarzenegger, who said that he couldn’t sign a bill that pre-empted federal law.
- E. coli and Salmonella outbreaks have become more frequent in America, whether it be from spinach or jalapeños. In 2007, there were 73,000 people sickened from the E. coli virus.
- Corn products include: ketchup, cheese, Twinkies, batteries, peanut butter, Cheez-Its, salad dressings, Coke, jelly, Sweet & Low, syrup, juice, Kool-Aid, charcoal, diapers, Motrin, meat and fast food.Corn, which is the main ingredient in animal feed, is also used as a food additive. Those products commonly include: Cellulose, Xylitol, Maltodextrin, Ethylene, Gluten, Fibersol-2, Citrus Cloud Emulsion, Inosital, Fructose, Calcium Stearate, Saccharin, Sucrose, Sorbital, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Di-glycerides, Semolina, Sorbic Acid, Alpha Tocopherol, Ethyl Lactate, Polydextrose, Xantham Gum, White Vinegar, Ethel Acetate, Fumaric Acid, Ascorbic Acid, Baking Powder, Zein, Vanilla Extract, Margarine, and Starch.
- 1 in 3 Americans born after 2000 will contract early onset diabetes; Among minorities, the rate will be 1 in 2.
It is no wonder that organic products are the fastest growing food segment, increasing 20% annually.