This is a bit like the chicken and the egg; pardon the pun, and which came first, the documentary or the book or perhaps both. Andersen and Kuhn set out to film a documentary based on environmental issues, namely the effect of agriculture on this planet and by doing so, uncovered many more unpalatable truths which very easily could have seen them both locked up for many years.
A bit strong you many well think, for a ‘doco’ on agriculture! How dangerous could it be to travel about asking a few questions about how the food we so readily consume in increasing large amounts is produced; as it turns out, it can be very dangerous indeed, especially in the United States where this research was a carried out.
The project started out in a harmless manner with Andersen seeing the film produced by Al Gore – An Inconvenient Truth- where he talks about the fact that the earth, our earth is in peril of global warming and the effects, on not just the planet but also the people. That this man, a leading political figure, could come out with this information meant there must be some credibility to this thing called Global Warming. Many, many people took this to heart, making radical changes in their lives to help save the planet.
But it was not until Andersen and Kuhn began to take a really deep look into just what else may be contributing to the slow destruction of our world, taking them both to places they never thought they would venture and meeting people who, while kind of believing what they are doing in the way of food production, was ‘best practice’ far as environmental issues were concerned, to say otherwise was not a good business move.
The more horrifying the statistics uncovered about animal agriculture, which goes right down to how eggs are produced, the further they dug, contacting one large Global Environmental Protection group after another to try and find out what was being done to prevent the destruction caused by animal agriculture.
What was going on that big companies were becoming hostile to the enquires; this then begged the question, what was the driving factor behind the need to produce more and more food for an ever increasing, more sickly, rapidly burgeoning population world-wide, with dwindling resources, that called for constant stonewalling from these groups?
After you have read the book, which by the way will horrify you and make you ill to the stomach in each of the chapters from 1 to 9, with hope being held out in chapters 10 and 11, or watched the documentary, you will certainly have much to contemplate about what you choose to eat and where you gather that food.
There are many points raised that are unpalatable, confrontational and sickening but alternatively, the strongest point is that we as consumers need to be more responsible, need to be better informed as to how our food is produced, have a far better understanding of and enquiring further, as to the environment and issues surrounding food production on all levels.
We as the people of the world can make a difference, can make a change, by simply understanding more about our world, making some small, significant and changes in what we eat, and how that will affect our health and our environment.
|Author||Keegan Kuhn, Kip Andersen, introduction by Chris Hedges|
|Distributor||New South Books|