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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Year of Plenty

Food Inc. Is a Shot Across the Bow of Industrial Food Practices

Here's the latest installment in the Public Relations wars around our sick food systems. First there was the book, "Fast Food Nation", then Michael Pollan's series of books culminating in "Ominvore's Dilemma", and now the two authors of those books, among others, join forces on the movie, "Food Inc." I'm thinking it's probably similar to the the wonderful documentary, "King Korn", but with a much larger budget.

Here's the description from the web site;

In Food, Inc., filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of E. coli—the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults.

I think we have to be careful not to demonize people involved with industrial ag and I hope this film does not do that. Michael Moore styled gotchas get the blood pumping but they don't do much for constructive engagement. As the folks at the Spokane Ag Bureau told me, they want the Foodie Revolutionaries to know that these are families too. The big corporations are made up of families too.

I'm eager to see the film. Unfortunately Spokane is not groovy enough to have a release date listed. Where is the Magic Lantern when you need it?

Year of Plenty

The Year of Plenty blog was created by Craig Goodwin in the winter of 2008 to chronicle the experiences of his family as they sought to consume everything local, used, homegrown or homemade. That journey was a wonderful introduction to people and movements in the Spokane area who are seeking the welfare of the community through local foods, farmers markets, community gardens, sustainable transportation, and more fulfilling and just patterns of consumption. In 2009 and beyond the blog will continue to report on these relationships and practices, all through the eyes of a family with young children. Craig manages the Millwood Farmers' Market, is a Master Food Preserver and Pastor at Millwood Presbyterian Church. Craig can be reached at