America's Food: What You Don't Know About What You Eat by Harvey Blatt

By Harvey Blatt

We don't imagine a lot approximately how meals will get to our tables, or what needed to take place to fill our supermarket's produce part with completely around pink tomatoes and its meat counter with slabs of fantastically marbled steak. We don't observe that the beef in a single fast-food hamburger could come from 1000 various farm animals raised in 5 various nations. in reality, so much people have a pretty summary figuring out of what occurs on a farm. In America's meals, Harvey Blatt provides us the specifics. He tells us, for instance, 3rd of the fruit and veggies grown are discarded for only aesthetic purposes; that the substitute fertilizers used to counterpoint our depleted soil include toxic heavy metals; that chickens who stand all day on cord in cages decide on feed with pain-killing medications over feed with out them; and that the typical American eats his or her bodyweight in foodstuff ingredients every year. Blatt additionally asks us to consider the implications of consuming nutrients to this point faraway from agriculture; why bad nutrients is reasonable; why there's a world Federation of aggressive consuming; what we don't need to know approximately how animals raised for meat stay, die, and are butchered; no matter if individuals are even designed to be carnivorous; and why there's starvation whilst nutrition creation has elevated so dramatically. America's foodstuff describes the creation of all kinds of foodstuff within the usa and the environmental and illnesses linked to every one. After taking us on a travel of the yank meals system---not in basic terms the elemental nutrients teams yet soil, grain farming, natural meals, genetically changed nutrients, nutrition processing, and diet--Blatt reminds us that we aren't powerless. when we be aware of the evidence approximately meals in the US, we will switch issues through the alternatives we make as shoppers, as electorate, and as moral humans.

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Additional info for America's Food: What You Don't Know About What You Eat

Sample text

And every few years the ground would be left fallow so it could regenerate its nutritional capabilities. These had been the successful characteristics of farms for thousands of years. But as all sections of the economy were industrialized throughout the twentieth century, highly mechanized and corporate-run models of crop production were considered more efficient than the traditional small farm models. This was seen as a natural and necessary progression toward greater efficiency and productivity.

Its food intake is biologically controlled. American farmers are now getting the maximum possible crop production per acre, barring new developments in genetic engineering. With fertilizer sales stagnant, agribusiness companies are pioneering genetic modification of crops to increase their profits (chapter 5). Of the major nutrients needed for crops, nitrogen is most commonly the limiting one. 11 The major change in NPK percentages over the past few decades has been in the application of nitrogen, which has increased from 37 percent in 1960 to 57 percent today, a change that has had terrible environmental effects.

Fortunately Americans have awakened to the fact that the air we breathe is dirty and harmful to human health, and there have been many successes with cleanup efforts in recent decades. Similarly, we have realized that the water we drink contains many other substances besides H2O, and there have been some successes in purification efforts. But the deterioration in quality and the erosion of the soil in which food grows is a different story. 1 How often do you encounter in the media a presentation and discussion of soil?

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