Thanksgiving: Can’t We Just Enjoy Food Again?

From The Washington Post:

Thanksgiving After decades of blissful ignorance, Americans have begun pondering how the food we consume each day arrives on our plates. Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006) forced readers to face the fact that our demand for a range of reasonably priced meats and produce comes with serious environmental consequences. Now two new books, Ann Vileisis’s Kitchen Literacy and Sarah Murray’s Moveable Feasts, give us even more reason to reevaluate the meals we take for granted. But they come to very different conclusions about whether to embrace or decry our increasingly complicated food web.

Kitchen Literacy chronicles how the growth of the increasingly complex food distribution system — railroads transporting animals and factories producing canned goods — eventually led consumers into a “covenant of ignorance” with supermarket chains, food manufacturers and advertising firms. All of them insisted that sleek packaging and catchy slogans mattered more than the traditional, hard-earned expertise homemakers had relied on for years.

More here.