I don't jump on band wagons, I just don't. They are usually driven by people with somewhat good intentions, but are followed by alot of people who don't know any real depth about the subject and were swooned by a few key points. The band wagon is maintained and fueled by those who make money off of the gullible, partially educated, but very intense followers. So I let them pass and make my own way.
Case in point - I didn't jump on the 'demonizing commercial farms' band wagon. Why?
- There aren't enough small 'local' farms in the country to feed everyone, let alone meet all of our export requirements (because remember we are the bread basket of the world, this isn't just a saying - millions would go hungry if it wasn't for our cheap wheat and corn). As of right now, those farms are necessary to feed us and hundreds of other countries. This isn't "propaganda" - its math.
- Not all commercial farms are as bad as the movie Food Inc, it's lovely Facebook page (and the other half million anti 'big food' pages it has spawned) portrays them to be. Animals in most farms are very well treated and cared for, there will ALWAYS be exceptions, but the exceptions are not the norm - regardless of how much PETA and the Humane Society would like you to believe that it is the norm. They are the few. With a little research and asking around in the industry you can figure out which companies work with good farms, which ones do not, and which companies have high standards.
- You have to ask yourself, honestly, why is commercial food the way it is today? And take responsibility.
Our food is mass produced the way it is today because we (the American public) have asked for it with our dollar.
The American public wants CHEAP food. Even WE preppers want cheap food. How many times are food prices, deals, and coupons talked about on blogs, prepping sites and Facebook a day???? The American public also wants SAFE food. They want food that they can buy out of the freezer section - take home (make a few stops, pick up kids, you know) set the food on the counter, get stuff put away, then get around to putting the food in the freezer, where it is re-froze, THEN GET IT OUT another day, thaw it, cook it, eat it AND....(this is where it gets good).... NOT GET SICK. That's important - when people get sick - there is a public out cry (the "evil" food companies aren't being clean enough!!). That's right, place the blame on someone else. I raise my own meat, and I would never do that crap with our meat - I'd get sick.
The economy sucks, everyone is on a budget and everyone wants the best deal that they can afford. Historically when faced with the option of a healthier non-GMO, organic, heirloom product or a cheap product of dubious origins the american people have chosen time and time again - the cheap stuff. We want our food, we want it fast, and cheap. We don't want to have to cook it, we don't want to have to grow it, we don't want it to make us sick and we don't want to actually have to do any "work" to get it.
Thus we have the system we have today - and instead of taking responsibility for it, and correcting it -- by starting with ourselves we BLAME. Blame the food industry, blame the government, blame GMOs and the companies that sell them, blame commercial farms, bad bad bad. Instead of taking our food into our own hands we cry out to the government (the same one that helped us get into this mess) to protect us! With more regulations! More rules! Labeling laws! Etc etc etc....
It. Will. Never. Work.
It. Will. Never. Work.
If the American public asks for better food, safer food, and more healthy food with their dollar, the market will respond (this is how capitalism and free markets work - no one wants to be selling the product everyone hates, therefore they will start selling what everyone wants to buy). It will not be an instant fix, but over the years will the market will respond without *any* new laws. Look at high fructose corn syrup and MSG. Everyday I am seeing more and more products without those ingredients. This is because people don't want them any more, and the market is responding. And lets not forget, the best option - the I hear about the least, is and has always been for you to grow your own food and not depend on new laws, markets or others for your food and health.
I know lots of farmers, they are honest, hard working, self reliant, and down to earth people. I have spent time on chicken farms, dairy farms and wheat farms. I have seen why decisions are made. I have seen the issue from both sides. THIS is why i am not on that particular band wagon.
Stay tuned to see what other band wagons I pass on.