We have all heard the phrase “What you don’t know won’t hurt you” and it has undoubtedly applied to many situations in our lives that we are still unaware of. We like to toss around this phrase without worrying too much about what it implies because that is the whole point of the phrase, not to worry. When it comes to what we are putting into our bodies, though, what we do not know can indeed hurt us immensely. In the United States, we have grown accustomed to not thinking much about what we are consuming. The main factors we look for in food are taste and price. We live in a consumer society where money rules our nation, it rules our lives, and it rules us. Money has become the main focus for every decision we make, but when it comes to something as important as our health, should we look at a few other factors? With societies concerns focusing on wealth and profit, there is no surprise that the food industry finds the cheapest ways to produce the most food. Consequently, this produces many negative effects on aspects of our lives such as our health and the environment. When choosing what foods to consume, we should begin to pay more attention to factors other than the price tag. The food industry obviously plays a big role in this epidemic of processed food, but they are not the only ones to blame. Yes they are the ones taking advantage of our ignorance by mass-producing cheap food that they know we will not think twice about, but the ignorance is our fault. Author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma, Michael Pollan, describes the current foundation of the food industry, “Our food system depends on consumers’ not knowing much about it beyond the price disclosed by the checkout scanner. Cheapness and ignorance are mutually reinforcing” (Pollan 245). Pollan is correct in his assumption that most Americans do not know much about their food besides how much it cost. Most of them are not even aware that they do not know what is in their food. They...
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