Cheap Food Is Not Cheap When You Count the Medical Bills It Entails
One of the paradigms of American farming is that the farmer has always been grossly underpaid. The people who buy the foods produced do so on a wholesale basis. They contrive artificial ways to penalize farmers for not producing the crops or animals wanted in the ways that are most profitable to the wholesalers. The end-consumers are rarely considered in the process.
Many people do not know that in the average box of cereal it cost more to make the package than the farmers gets paid for the grain.
“It is not, it is not,” saith the buyer, but then in his heart he laughs. ” Proverbs 20:14
The farmers rightly resent it. But until recently, there was little they could do. And they get little sympathy from the shoppers who try to stretch their grocery budgets to feed an entire family because those shoppers have born the burden of paying for the packaging, marketing and consumer research.
Present day reality is that once we transitioned from being an agrarian society to an industrial one, the food the farmers sent us was taken for granted. It became a commodity.
All of that is changing because the soaring medical bills most families encounter are proof enough that our food is not doing for us what it is supposed to. Many are turning to local farmers to try to re-capture the health that was common two generations ago.
They do it through CSA’s (Community Supported Agriculture) that contract to provide fresh produce with pesticides or herbicides. For a good example, see the CSA in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Roll Tide!)
Expand Your Awareness of How What You Eat Matters
Reflection can open doors to new ways of thinking and living.
People are beginning to see the re-emergence of the small, family farm. They don’t realize what an exercise in courage it is.
Family farms are run by people who dare to defy the government and the large agricultural interests. Their methods are different, quirky, creatively inventive and often executed on shoe-string budget.
Gene Logsdon notes in his book “Living at Nature’s Pace” that “Sustainable farms are to today’s headlong rush towards destruction what the monasteries were to the Dark Ages: places to preserve human skills and crafts until some semblance of common sense and common purpose returns to the public mind.”