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Food Inc. Summary Essay

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Food Inc. Summary Essay

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Food Inc. opens in an American supermarket and draws attention to the unnatural nature of year-round tomatoes and boneless meat. It pulls aside the curtain that is concealing the truth about food from the consumer. After the brief intro, the movie shifts its focus to the topic of fast food and its impact on the meat industries. Fast food virtually started with McDonald’s. When they decided to simplify their menu and hire employees that repeated one task over and over for minimum wage, the result was the fast food phenomenon that swept the United States, and then the world. Today, McDonald’s is the largest purchaser of beef and potatoes in the United States, and is one of the largest purchasers of pork, chicken, tomatoes, and apples. Though an unintentional consequence, this has had a drastic impact on the way all food is processed. The top four meat packers now control over 80% of the market, the Tyson Corporation being the largest of them all.

The documentary next takes us to a Chicken farm in Kentucky and explains that, since the 1950s, chickens have doubled in size, and they reach that incredible size in half the time it used to take them to reach their more natural size. Chickens today are genetically modified to have larger breasts in response to the consumer preference for white meat. The chickens grow at such a rate that their bones and organs can’t keep up with the rapid growth of the muscles, or the meat. The original farmer that was followed in the documentary was unable to take the filmmakers inside the chicken houses. After being visited multiple times by Tyson representatives, the farmer informed the filmmakers that he would be unable to escort them inside. After a long search, a woman finally stepped forward and agreed to take the filmmakers inside an overly-crowded coop and behind the veil of the modern chicken industry.

The next veil that is lifted by the film is that of the corn industry. Corn can be chemically engineered into many different...

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