Debating the true cost of cheap food
Cheap food — particularly fast food — has become a political issue. Critics argue that dollar menus are contributing to obesity rates, while some would argue that cheap food is the the only way many people can afford to eat and should be seen as a triumph of modern agrarian practices.
In an opinion piece for the Cattle Network, Kansas City freelance writer Chuck Jolley rails against what he sees as “elitist snobbery” in which the most fortunate are trying to make value judgments for the people who are just scraping by and ignoring the fact that farming is a for-profit enterprise that has evolved in order to meet the rapidly growing population:
The food chain in America — from the ranch-to-restaurant, gate-to-plate, farm-to-fork, whatever you want to call it — is an amazingly complex but efficient model. It puts the product on the table quickly and at an affordable price. The centuries old curse of having to spend a majority of our waking hours and cash on feeding our families and fending off famine is a distant memory. Fortunately.