Villains in the World of Food

Villains in the World of Food

Aug 9, 2010 |  by  |  Food Heroes, On the Web  |  Share

In the world of sustainable food there are both heroes and villains. Unfortunately, the villains aren’t always so obvious. Unlike their Hollywood counterparts, they don’t don spindly mustachios, black capes and top hats. They don’t wear incessantly evil grins and tap their fingers together as they cultivate an evil plot to rule the world. Nope, these men in black are far more deceptive. They dress in typical businessman garb and circulate propaganda containing images of happy farmers, lush fields and healthy livestock. They toss around phrases like “consumer freedom” and make statements like, “We believe that only you know what’s best for you.”

You Just Got Played

But it’s a total con. The world of dirty food is thick with many layers. At the center are the multi-million and billion dollar chemical, restaurant and food companies. While the outer layers belong to the individuals and groups who advocate for those companies. They’re spinsters and they do whatever they can to make their boss look good. So when they say, “only you know what’s best for you,” what they really mean is “only you know what’s best when it’s on their terms,” since they don’t support the labeling of genetically modified foods and don’t let farmers plant whatever they want in their own fields. These aren’t freedom fighters, they’re food bullies and they certainly don’t want people deciding what’s best for them, especially when profits are at stake.

So the hooligans who advocate for big business serve as foot-soldiers in the shady underbelly of the food world, aligning themselves with groups like the dark syndicate known as Monsanto. A quick peek at the Monsanto SourceWatch profile will paint a clear picture of their past and present transgressions. Make no mistake, folks, these cats are most certainly the real deal.

Harvest of Fearmonsanto rain Villains in the World of Food

In the May 2008 Vanity Fair article, “Monsanto’s Harvest of Fear,” reporters Donald Barlett and James Steele write, “Monsanto relies on a shadowy army of private investigators and agents in the American heartland to strike fear into farm country. They fan out into fields and farm towns, where they secretly videotape and photograph farmers, store owners, and co-ops; infiltrate community meetings; and gather information from informants about farming activities. Farmers say that some Monsanto agents pretend to be surveyors. Others confront farmers on their land and try to pressure them to sign papers giving Monsanto access to their private records. Farmers call them the “seed police” and use words such as “Gestapo” and “Mafia” to describe their tactics.”

And like the Mafia, they support what I like to call “front” organizations like the non-profit Hudson Institute and the Center for Consumer Freedom. They throw down the cash and these groups promote their message of anti-organic, pro-genetically modified foods (among other evil practices). Goons like Dennis Avery, Director of the Center for Global Food Issues, a program within the Hudson Institute, acts as an organic agriculture saboteur. He’s written op-eds titled, “Organic Food: Just a Superstition” and “The Silent Killer in Organic Foods.” In the latter article, scientists within the CDC claim he fabricated elements within his story…what a surprise.

You can get the dirty lowdown on Dennis Avery by checking out his SourceWatch file or his Political Friendster profile.

Then there’s El Capitan, Rick Berman and his Center for Consumer Freedom (formerly the Guest Choice Network), another front organization that acts as though it looks out for the people. Originally funded by Phillip Morris, this organization had the bold quest “to unite the restaurant and hospitality industries in a campaign to defend their consumers and marketing programs against attacks from anti-smoking, anti-drinking, anti-meat, etc. activists …”

Well, we all know how that one ended, as the smoking portion of that venture came to a smoldering demise. But other skanky companies like Monsanto, Coca Cola and Wendy’s jumped on board to throw some financial muscle behind the “good” fight. And it’s a fight that may never end.

And what you see here hardly scratches the surface of the horrors that can be found within the world of food.

Fortunately, food heroes do exist and their numbers are growing. You wouldn’t know it by looking at them – they don’t wear capes or have bold letters on their chest – but that’s the beauty of it because they’ll never see them coming until it’s too late. The life of our food is at stake and we need people willing to stand up and fight.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some heroes to find.

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