Oftentimes our global perspective seems comfortable, predictable and safe. We eat, run, work, love and follow a routine that is easy to comprehend, rinse and repeat.
Oftentimes that comfort needs to be challenged, viewpoints need to be shifted, other shoes need to be walked in.
My personal day of enlightenment is easy to recall – it was sparked by the documentary Food Inc.. That movie took my mild curiosity in our US food system to new heights, while changing my entire perception of trust. No longer did I have the capacity to think or say, “I’m sure Business X is doing the right thing for our world and our people – I’m sure they care about what is right.”
One of the most memorable characters of the groundbreaking film was farmer Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. Salatin had many memorable quotes, expressed in his homey yet forceful tone, which set a theme for the movie: It’s Time to Wake Up People!
And although some can interpret our current situation – battling climate change, pesticide overuse, GMO proliferation – and throw their hands up in a “we’re doomed” harrumph, know that Food Inc. isn’t about fear, it’s about empowerment to change the US food system that currently exists.
“You as a food buyer have the distinct privilege of proactively participating in shaping the world your children will inherit”
You vote every day with your wallet. You are not a bystander. You make choices that will influence decision makers.
Don’t cave to convenience, fight for products and companies that will support our planet and continually educate yourself on the business monoliths that are actually worth fearing.
These are the messages we need to share, so please help us change minds – share our photo and the wisdom that goes with it.
Joel Salatin is an American farmer, lecturer, and author whose books include Folks, This Ain’t Normal; You Can Farm; and Salad Bar Beef.