Friday, September 16, 2011

The Cheap Disease


U.S. food consumers are somehow programmed to buy food cheaply. Our national motivation to pay less seems to be in our social DNA. We suffer what I call The Cheap Disease.
This national sport has created a cancer that's been growing out of control inside our food system and our society. Consumers' consumption represents about 2/3 of the GDP in our country, therefore, whatever we buy is big business--and keep in mind that we all eat every single day.
As consumers, we are very vulnerable to marketing messages. When companies spend big money on advertisement and social media, we simply obey. We have been bombarded for years with messages prompting us to pay as little as possible for food. The idea is simple: The less we pay, the smarter we're supposed to be.
Even today, most food advertisement on TV focuses on promoting cheaper prices. The "to-be-smart" message to pay less for food is always present. In other words, we have simply been brainwashed for years because, in fact, cheap food means lack of good nutrients, with huge amounts of artificial and chemical contents, leading inexorably to bad health and, of course, an obscene amount of environmental damage. While chasing the cheapest possible food, we have opened the door for the key decision makers in our food system to transform it into the oil/chemical monster that it is today, and at the same time, our collective health has deteriorated to a point beyond belief.


2 comments:

basilmomma: Heather Tallman said...

Well, you know how I feel about this. Cheap marketing=sicker more obese sedentary people=dying at younger ages. I truly feel that people will believe what they see in advertising and that is all. A real person could tell them what they eat, drink and do is killing them but as long as their Sunny D that's on sale this week says it has a full days worth of vitamin C then they think that is a healthy drink!
OK, off soapbox now...
Have a great day Mia!!

Mia said...

Well said, Heather! I have had many say to me that what I buy (fresh and organic), they can't afford and yet when prompted further as to how much they spent weekly on food for a family that is smaller than mine - they spent close to double what I buy and they buy mainly pre-packaged and frozen. I am very, very fortunate that I am quite resourceful in the kitchen. The problem is many don't know how to cook and they don't read the labels careful because many are misleading! I thought this was a very interesting article.

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