February 25th, 2008 |
Culture, Food, Health, Quotes
Much of the litter that now defaces our country is fairly directly caused by the massive secession or exclusion of most of our people from active participation in the food economy. We have made a social ideal of minimal involvement in the growing and cooking of foods. This is one of the dearest “liberations” of our affluence. Nevertheless, the more dependent we become on the industries of eating and drinking, the more waste we are going to produce.
—Wendell Berry, “Waste” in What Are People For? (1990), pp. 127-128.
February 22nd, 2008 |
Culture, Food, Health, Quotes
A food culture of anti-eating is worse than useless. People hold to their food customs because of the positives: comfort, nourishment, heavenly aromas. A sturdy food tradition even calls to outsiders; plenty of red-blooded Americans will happily eat Italian, French, Thai, Chinese, you name it. But try the reverse: hand the Atkins menu to a French person, and run for your life.
—Barbara Kingsolver, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life (HarperCollins: 2007), p. 17.
February 16th, 2008 |
Agriculture, Culture, Food, Language, Quotes
Our words for unhealthy contamination—“soiled” or “dirty”—suggest that if we really knew the number-one ingredient of a garden, we’d all head straight into therapy.
—Barbara Kingsolver, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life (HarperCollins: 2007), p. 10.
January 25th, 2008 |
Animals, Food, Morality
Were the walls of the meat industry to become transparent, literally or even figuratively, we would not long continue to raise, kill, and eat animals the way we do. Tail docking and sow crates and beak clipping would disappear overnight, and the days of slaughtering four hundred head of cattle an hour would promptly come to an end—for who could stand the sight? Yes, meat would get more expensive. We’d probably eat a lot less of it, too, but maybe when we did eat animals we’d eat them with the consciousness, ceremony, and respect they deserve.
–Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), p. 333
January 3rd, 2008 |
Agriculture, Animals, Food, Quotes
Our teeth are omnicompetent—designed for tearing animal flesh as well as grinding plants. So are our jaws, which we can move in the manner of a carnivore, a rodent, or an herbivore, depending on the dish. Our stomachs produce an enzyme specifically designed to break down elastin, a type of protein found in meat and nowhere else. Our metabolism requires specific chemical compounds that, in nature, can be gotten only from plants (like vitamin C) and others that can be gotten only from animals (like vitamin B-12). More than just the spice of human life, variety for us appears to be a biological necessity.
–Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), p. 289
December 19th, 2007 |
Biology, Food, Health, Quotes
The blessing of the omnivore is that he can eat a great many different things in nature. The curse of the omnivore is that when it comes to figuring out which of those things are safe to eat, he’s pretty much on his own.
–Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), p. 287
November 14th, 2007 |
Agrarianism, Agriculture, Food, Health, Quotes
Don’t you find it odd that people will put more work into choosing their mechanic or house contractor than they will into choosing the person who grows their food?
–Joel Salatin in Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), p. 240
November 7th, 2007 |
Agriculture, Biology, Food, Quotes
Considering that the human animal did not taste [high-fructose corn syrup] until 1980, for [it] to have become the leading source of sweetness in our diet stands as a notable achievement on the part of the corn-refining industry, not to mention this remarkable plant.
–Michael Pollan, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), p. 103