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Response to The Omnivore's Dilemma - Essay Example

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Insert your name here Omnivore's Dilemma is a non-fictional book written by Michael Pollan, and it focuses on the wide variety of food choices we the humans have, and how that variety and the ‘production process’ of those food choices leads to dilemma in their minds…
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Response to The Omnivore's Dilemma

Download file to see previous pages... Because of these extensive choices, dilemmas are arising in the human’s minds regarding how food items are produced, whether naturally or artificially, whether unethical practices are followed, in total dilemma of what food to eat. “When you can eat just about anything nature has to offer, deciding what you should eat will inevitably stir anxiety” (Pollan 3). So, the main intent of the author, Michael Pollan is to provide the readers with an overview of the production process of various food choices, so the readers can select the apt foods, they want to consume. To learn for himself, and also to inform the readers about the production processes and thereby about food choices, Pollan follows the food chains of the three major food categories, which provide us the food– industrial food, organic food, and foraging food. That is, he examines the food chains of these three food categories from the initial till it reaches the humans stage (factory production and supermarkets in the case of Industrial food, agricultural farms, small scale producers and vendors in the case of organic food and finally hunting expedition in case of foraging). “To this end, he embarks on four separate eating adventures, each of which starts at the very beginning — in the soil from which the raw materials of his dinners will emerge — and ends with a cooked, finished meal.” (Kamp 2006). The other main intent of Pollan is bring into focus how corn plant has came to dominate majority of the food choices in the American diet, and so allocates sizable portion of the book (close to 7 chapters) discussing about it. Although, corn is a benign plant, which is grown in large numbers throughout America and consumed directly in minimal quantities, it is actively used in the production of various food items, food additives, preservatives, etc. That is, after corn is produced, it is milled or refined or recompounded, and then it could “become any number of things, from ethanol for the gas tank to dozens of edible, if not nutritious, products, like the thickener in a milkshake, the hydrogenated oil in margarine, the modified cornstarch,…the ubiquitous sweetener known as high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).” (Kamp 2006). With such extensive ‘applications’, Corn plant production is crucial to the survival and functioning of the various food industries. Because of which, the industrial food industry is implementing various dubious and unethical production practices to produce corn in a large scale manner. With heightened production, the corn has become cheap and plentiful, with Pollan even stating that it has become a “remarkably inexpensive industrial raw material.” (Kamp 2006). As a result, Pollan argues, food is much cheaper and more plentiful than it used to be, but unfortunately the health of the humans and that of the environment has deteriorated. Pollan also had the intent to bring out the negatives of the organic food industry as well. Although, the organic industry mainly produces environment friendly and healthy foods for the people to consume, the production process in that industry also has started bordering on commercialization. That is, producers are adopting many of the methods of the industrial fo ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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