Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Omnivore's Dilemma

On Jess's recommendation, I picked up The Omnivore's Dilemma from the library.

Conclusion after reading chapter one of part one: if a disease develops that wipes corn out, civilization will collapse.

Correction: this conclusion was after reading section one of chapter one of part one. But the conclusion didn't change after reading the rest of the chapter.


Deneen said...

I just finished reading "Working in the Shadows" by Gabriel Thompson-good read and I read "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer a while back. Both are good books. I like Pollan's books, but liked these better.

I now consider myself a "selective omnivore", by locally, we even bought 1/2 a cow from a CSA last year and ordered 1/2 for next year. We had stopped frequenting fast food places a long time ago (Elena even figured out McDonalds=stomachache on her own), but watched "Supersize Me" and that was it.

I refuse to eat chicken now since reading "Eating animals". Factory farming is out of control in the US and unless I can get local meat or guaranteed organic. Free range in factory farming is an area of 8 1/2" x 11" and a window somewhere in the room. I also buy my eggs locally now.

And, for the record, they say it's because American's want cheap food, well the 1/2 a cow, grass fed, with humane processing cost us approx $4.50 a lb for black angus meat-cheaper than the supermarket. And yes, you can taste the difference.

Both books should be available in the library.

noricum said...

I'll check those out when I'm done this one... thanks! :)

Thanks for the tip on what "free range" means. I must admit, I was wondering just how "free" the chickens actually are, since I couldn't see supermarket "free range" eggs coming from chickens wandering around a farmyard. *sigh* I don't buy a lot of eggs, but I do need them occasionally for baking.

Living in an apartment with only the top-of-fridge freezer, buying half a cow isn't practical for me... but I am trying to figure stuff out. (Perhaps one day...)

Sara said...

Another book to consider is: The Ethics of What We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter. The authors look at a variety of diets and their cost to health and the environment (and surprisingly local sometimes is more detrimental.)
I could go on forever about food choices...but I won't ;-)

noricum said...

Thanks! I'll add it to the list. :)

jess said...

I'm not going to say I agree 100% with Pollan, but he makes some good points about some things. Mostly I like to read lots of different sources and then come up with my own decisions on things. It's all fascinating to me, though. Hope you enjoy it -- Deneen and Sara mentioned some other books worth reading too. :)

noricum said...

There's definitely some exaggeration, but he does make good points. No, I won't follow him blindly, and yes, I'll do more reading too. ;)