Read Dilema omnivorului. O istorie naturala despre patru moduri de alimentatie by Michael Pollan Free Online
Book Title: Dilema omnivorului. O istorie naturala despre patru moduri de alimentatie|
Loaded: 2585 times
Reader ratings: 7.4
The author of the book: Michael Pollan
Edition: House of Guides
Date of issue: 2008
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 22.82 MB
City - Country: No data
Read full description of the books:
Michael Pollan is a journalist, and an omnivore, curious about where the food he puts in his mouth comes from. In the book he follows four meals from the very beginning of the food chain to his plate. What he finds is that the food we put in our mouths turns out to be a big decision- a moral, political, and environmental one.
Part One- CORN
The discussion begins with CORN. Part one of this book is shocking. I knew corn was the main crop grown in America and that farmers growing it are in big trouble, requiring government subsidies just to stay afloat, but Michael Pollan unravels how it got to that point.
After leaving the farm, most of the corn finds its way to the Confined Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) where it is fed to cows, pigs, chicken, turkey, and now even fish. This is problematic due to the fact that cows aren't built to eat corn. They eat grass. This unnatural diet leads to various health problems for the cow that must be countered with a cocktail of antibiotics and hormones, creating more health problems for us.
He follows the corn from the field to the supermarket, where it now infiltrates virtually every processed food on the shelf. I had no idea that corn is broken down and recombined into hundreds of different forms, most notably oils, high fructose corn syrup, and xantham gum (never knew what the hell that was). Just take a look at the food label of any processed food and your probably eating some scientific form of that kernel of corn.
He followed the corn all the way to his meal at McDonald's. Between Pollan, his wife, and his son they packed in 4,510 calories for lunch. The items that contained the highest proportion of corn turned out to be the soda (100%), milk shake (78%), salad dressing (65%), chicken nuggets (56%), cheeseburger (52%), and french fries (23%). And we thought we were eating such a varied diet. As Pollan points out, we are simply industrialized eaters surviving on corn.
Part 2- GRASS
Part two focuses on the organic movement. Everyone thinks they're making a wonderful decision to eat organic and in one sense they are, saving the soil from all of the synthetic fertilizers and pesticides (although some crazy stuff is still allowed under US organic laws). There are the obvious health benefits of not ingesting those things. The dark side is that the bag of Earthbound Farms baby lettuce mix you just bought traveled 3,000 miles in refrigerated trucks using untold amounts of energy. Organic started out as a local movement, but as demands increased, it was forced to industrialize. Supermarkets don't want to deal with several smaller local organic farmers. They want one large buyer to stock all their produce needs. Big Organic is now a 350 million dollar business.
Meet Rosie, the organic free range chicken:
The lesson taken away from Rosie is beware of food labels that state things like "free range" or "cage-free." These are really meaningless statements placed on packaging in an attempt to lessen the guilt of consumers that have informed themselves about the horrors of industrial factory farming. Michael Pollan tracked down Rosie and it turns out that she isn't out wandering in a field of grass. She's in a long indoor structure confined with twenty thousand birds for the first five weeks of her life. When they open the doors at either end after the first five weeks, the birds habits have been set in place, they feel no need to take a chance out in the unknown (which turns out to be a small fenced in patch of grass that could never support all of the birds inside). As Pollan puts it "free range turns out to be not so much a lifestyle for these chickens as a two-week vacation option."
Pollan then visits Polyface Farm just outside of Charlottesville, VA where Joel Salatin raises cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, and even rabbits in harmony with the animals natural instincts. It is the true definition of symbiosis, where each species depends on the others and all depend on the grass. Salatin manages all of this using rotational grazing techniques. The cows come through first, then the chickens. The animals are moved on a daily basis to prevent overgrazing and to allow the proper spreading of the animals' droppings which in turn nourish the soil and grasses. He slaughters the chickens on site, in the open air where any of his costumers can watch and see where their food really comes from. Compare this to the CAFOs where the killing stations are off limits to all observers. What's going on behind those walls? Polyface cows and pigs have to be sent off-site due to USDA regulations. People drive from all over to buy his "clean food" and restaurants in Charlottesville proudly read "Polyface Farm chickens" on their menus. They give a variety of reasons when asked why they come all the way to buy Salatin's food:
"I just don't trust the meat in the supermarket anymore."
"You're not going to find fresher chickens anywhere."
"I drive 150 miles one way in order to get clean meat for my family."
"It actually tastes like chicken."
"Oh those beautiful eggs! The difference is night and day- the color, the richness, the fat content."
It is the alliance between the producer and the consumer. The consumers can look the farmer in the eyes and see that the food is produced "with care and without chemicals." They are also keeping the moeny in the community by supporting local farmers.
Part 3- The Forest
His final meal is from ingredients derived from Pollan's owe efforts through hunting and gathering. He realizes this is an unrealistic option in terms of our daily eating, but he wants to undergo this experiment to bring him closer to the food he eats. After hunting wild boar, gathering mushrooms from the forest, collecting cherries from a tree in the neighborhood, he discovers what is for him, "the perfect meal." Why perfect? His meal would not have been possible without the number of people that helped him in his hunting and gathering endeavours. It was an open food chain. He knew where all the ingredients came from and their were no hidden costs. "A meal that is eaten in full consciousness of what it took to make it is worth preparing every now and again, if only as a way to remind us of the true costs of the things we take for granted."
The bottom line:
What are we eating?
Where did it come from?
How did it make it to our table?
What is the true cost? (politically, environmentally, ethically, and in terms of the public health)
Download Dilema omnivorului. O istorie naturala despre patru moduri de alimentatie ERUB
Download Dilema omnivorului. O istorie naturala despre patru moduri de alimentatie DOC
Download Dilema omnivorului. O istorie naturala despre patru moduri de alimentatie TXT
Read information about the authorMichael Pollan is an American author, journalist, activist, and professor of journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, where he is also the director of the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism.
Excerpted from Wikipedia.