“Local” jumps the shark
Co-opetition, not competition: With its brand-new ad campaign touting the "local" potato farmers that grow its spuds, Frito-Lay is the latest big company to try and exploit consumers' newfound food consciousness in pursuit of market share. Processors like ConAgra are citing eaters' concerns over food safety and food miles, and a desire for more traceability in their latest marketing campaigns. And Big Farma is getting into the act, too, reports Kim Severson, by playing to Americans' protectionist impulses: “We don’t think the argument should be about the size of the farm,” says a Virginia Farm Bureau rep. “It should be, ‘Do you know the farmer and where is the farmer
from?’ You can have good and bad actors in any size farm." (New York Times) Nice try. But local is just one of the elements of SOLE food: the question we ask is, Do you know the farmer and is he/she
farming sustainably? Show us some large-scale, organic or "beyond
organic" diversified farms with ethical animal-welfare and labor practices, and we'll gladly patronize them.
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