Processing Food, Inc

We finally watched the movie Food, Inc.  Truth is I have wanted to watch it for quite some time, but put it off because I knew I would have to rethink a lot of things.

Today I am your typical American.  I live in the suburbs, where the houses are close and raising your own food is nearly impossible. We have a small garden, but we will never have animals.

I was raised quite differently though.  I am the daughter of a farmer.  We raised our own chicken (eggs), cows, turkeys and at one time pigs.  We got our milk from the neighbors and I remember bringing it home, large jar on my lap, still warm.

Our garden was huge, so my mom canned, froze things and shared with all the neighbors.

We were part of the processed food generation.  I like to think more towards the beginning of it.  We did partake in some of it.  I remember the only yellow cheese ever brought into our house was Kraft singles.  Not sure why mom thought that was a good idea.  I remember trying to cut it into strips to put it on our tacos. (I think I just threw up a little in my mouth with that memory.)  There weren’t many things brought into our house, but there were some things.

Our snacks were home baked goods and fruit and veggies.  Our cereal was limited because of money and the single serve snack bars were unknown to us, but we ate well.

I know we need to be buying organic, but I struggle with that too.  I mean is Organic really Organic?

But back to today, I am your typical American, I live in the suburbs, what do I do?  What are you doing?  It becomes Money4This is food from local farmers and Not4That is processed foods in stores. How does the typical American afford that?

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  1. I struggled at first with “real food” too, but actually my food bill has gone down. I blogged last year, 40 weeks of food for less than $2 per person per day. Cutting out the processed food was a huge help to our budget (you can find my old shopping lists and menu plans under “Food Stamp Challenge”.

    It does take effort. I live in Houston, not exactly on a farm. My HOA won’t even let me grow veggies in the front (as though I could grow anything here in July anyway!) Making a lot of things from scratch has helped too. A big thing that helped me line out my budget is that I made my own “food rules”, or priorities.

    So, now I spend a lot more on meat (previously, I would never pay more than $2 a pound for meat; now I think anything less than $5 a pound is a deal because I buy the antibiotic/hormone free pork, poultry, and beef!) But other areas of our food eating adjusted down. I don’t buy a lot of chips or crackers anymore. My kids eat fruit for snacks and I almost never purchase cookies or popsicles. It’s a trade off, but it can be done!

  2. Wow, tons of information to sift through. I know I am not the first one to think through this and I will be far from the last. It’s not the processed foods I struggle with, it’s the meat. I can control the processed foods by not allowing them in the house. It’s the meat that we eat way to much of that is the problem.

  3. My dad still insists on cubed Kraft singles on his tacos. It makes me nauseous to think about, but your post reminded me.

    The change from processed hell to real food is a challenging one, but I think any steps we take are worth it.

  4. Haha Em, that is so wrong!!!


  1. […] shared with you that I had finally watched the movie Food, Inc.  I am still processing it.  Still trying to figure out how we will do things differently.  Take […]