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Food Grades

by on November 15, 2013

Food Grades

What do you want to know about your food?

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5 Comments
  1. Cameron Brown permalink

    I think this article makes some really good points about the food we eat. Some of the points are things I would’ve have thought of when thinking about food. Things like deforestation and water usage are two things I never think of while buying or eating food. Other than the how healthy it is for me and how good it taste, I don’t ask any questions. For me I would like a grade on the label to directly tell me how good or bad that food is for me. I think the other problems with food are very important but I feel like those problems involve much larger organizations. I am fairly health conscious when it comes to food and often times it is confusing to read a lot of tiny print with so many percentages and numbers. Even on the front of some things it says with vitamins or whole wheat but who knows how truthful the large food companies are. So I would want to know on an A-F scale, how healthy foods are. I believe that could change how unhealthy America is and I think the large food companies that produce the most junk food would definitely see a decline in sales.

  2. This was an interesting article because I initially expected it would only discuss nutritional labels on food. However, people such as Jonathan Foley and Tracie McMillan, present an alternative way to label food. Foley, for example, believes that companies should label if the product requires deforestation, the quantity of water, and the amount of fertilizer used. In a similar manner, McMillan believes food labels should display whether the products are fairly produced and if the field workers receive appropriate wages. Using a different method, Michael Jacobson suggests we rate food with a number or letter grade based on nutrition only. Although I thought McMillan and Foley had unique ideas, I believe it would be hard to implement and convince manufacturers to put this on the label. Similarly, it would be hard to calculate the environmental harm inflicted by producing this food on the label. The criteria would have to be evaluated identically on all products; additionally, consumers may decide not to read these facts. As it is, consumers are overwhelmed by the information on labels and a simpler grading system would be much more effective. If I were to walk in to a store to grocery shop, I would be greatly influenced whether to a purchase the product or not if it had one bold grade on it. The next step, however, would be finding a method that manufacturers could determine the appropriate grade.

  3. emilylangan permalink

    I think that a grading system would actually be really helpful. I know that I would be able to much easier comprehend an A or an F opposed to the current nutrition facts. I think that this is the reason why the Weight Watcher’s systems is so successful- because people can easily comprehend a point system. Though it is true that it probably will never be implemented, even the idea that people are starting to want to know where exactly their food comes from is a start. On the other hand, there is a practicality aspect that is lacking. No matter how much literature is published about the disgusting things found in chicken nuggets, McDonalds is still going to be the biggest fast food chain in the world.

  4. Food is almost synonymous with “American”. It regulates our lives and our economy, but to what end? We buy and consume food without any regard as to where it’s come from or the damage that’s been done in order to get that food in front of us. So to me, putting a letter grade on the front of food for a consumer to have to acknowledge would be greatly beneficial. Food labels are great. For those of us who don’t want an angioplasty or hypertension by age 30, reading a food label is no problem. But for the rest of the populace, searching through annoyingly small text to find partially hydrogenated chemicals and corn syrup is just an annoyance.

    It just so happens though that unhealthy foods are for the most part the most environmentally damaging to produce. So seeing a “D” on the Doritos will therefore make Average Joe have to think twice about his rapidly expanding waistline AND the social and environmental damage producing his snack has. Great idea-I’d love to see it put in place.

  5. When I fist started reading this article, I assumed the food would be graded just on how healthy/organic the food is, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that two people’s initial thoughts were to have a grade for how humanely the people producing the food are treated. When we purchase food, we like to put up the veil and not think about where the food came from and especially not think about who handled the food. We don’t think about who pick our fruit, cut out meat, who packaged it or anything. We’ve lost touch with this human quality to our food, and mostly because we don’t want to think while grocery shopping that our food is so cheap because workers are getting exploited. It would be extremely beneficial for consumers to be aware home humanely the people preparing our food are treated before you buy it. Knowing that a food got a F or even a C on the treatment of their workers would really effect the consumer’s purchasing because how could someone morally by a banana knowing that it’s producers were treated poorly in its production. Companies would have to treat workers more humanely in order for people to purchase their food.
    I think it would be beneficial to also add a food grade for where our food come from, or for how many miles it traveled to be on our grocery shelf. It would be a little hard to implement, but I think seeing how far food had to be shipped to the consumer would really make people think twice before purchasing.

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