There are aluminium cans of soft drink, fruit juice boxes that have undergone aseptic processing, foil chip packets filled with oxygen, and in the meat aisle we have identical cuts of bacon in vacuum-sealed plastic.
If you want to know how current-day food markets really work, this is the place to start. Overall, this short book is packed with so much information and different points of discussion that it not only leaves readers impassioned, but also hungry for more. One of the great contributions of this book is that, in synthesizing the field so effectively, it sets into relief some of the most salient questions in food systems scholarship today.
And as the food industry continues to consolidate, Howard's work will become increasingly vital to imagining an economy with open, competitive markets for farmers and eaters alike. The fact that much of this food system concentration is intentionally behind the scenes-only a few companies own many brand names and operate through multiple subsidiaries-often renders the public unaware of this monopoly.
The book begins with retailers and moves down through the food chain, with chapters devoted to distributors, processors, and finally, the farm. Additional chapters cover agricultural inputs such as seeds and pesticides, commodity pricing, and organic food production.
Written in an academic yet eminently accessible style, the text is well researched and documented. Chapter references and a comprehensive index are at the end of the work. Points are illustrated with clear graphics and comprehensible tables.
Current examples featuring larger, well-known corporations add to the text's relevance and readability.
Non-polemical and jargon-free, this is a concise and concerning look at the ever-increasing food system concentration in the US and the global food supply chain. It is relevant also for the European reader, at least as a possible future scenario for the European agri-foodsystem.
The company serves local, regional and international organizations and acts as a direct link to a variety of products,services and solutions in the market. By wielding this power and changing the entire outlook of food industry, there is no longer consolation in buying a supermarket beef patty and a beef burger from McDonalds.
The two have been produced in the same factory, in a seemingly similar manner of cost cutting efficiency. Bargaining power refers to the ability to set higher prices for goods and services, and restaurants face bargaining situations when buying food, paper goods, maintenance services, restaurant equipment and furnishings, and sanitary supplies.
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