An Eight Point Manifesto Against Big Food

Readers, a warning: this is a parody. Although I suspect a few people out there may not see it that way.

CK's Eight-Point Manifesto for the Willingly Disempowered Consumer:

1) Big Food spends too much on advertising. The food industry spends some $33 billion a year on advertising, and because that number sounds reaallllly big, the conclusion is obvious: consumers are outmatched by all that money.

2) Food companies should stop selling good-tasting food. Making delicious, hyperpalatable food for consumers is just another greedy industry trick to get us all to eat more.

3) Consumers aren't the problem. Big Food's power and marketing skill is the problem. We consumers are just zombies who brainlessly shamble to the store, unconsciously pluck Big Food's products off the shelves, listlessly fish around in our pockets for money to pay, and then shamble back home to mindlessly eat.

4) The food industry causes obesity. Granted, you haven't yet been tackled in the snack aisle and force-fed junk food by goons from Pepsi-Frito Lay. But clearly, this "guerrilla marketing" technique is the next inevitable step for an industry that will stop at nothing until everyone is fat.

5) If we could just tax the all foods that make us fat, we'd solve obesity. Tax sugar, tax soda, tax big sodas, tax candy, tax junk food, tax wheat, tax fat, tax gluten, tax carbs. Tax it all! And I promise, we'll carefully apply that money towards new health and obesity initiatives. Really, I promise.

6) The government can protect consumers from themselves. We need more "Let's Move" programs, more Food Pyramids, and, of course, more government ag subsidies and corn subsidies. Don't we?

7) More regulation will solve our food industry's problems. The government always looks out for the little guy, right? Therefore, there can't possibly be any negative impact from increasing regulations. More rules means we can stop Big Food. (PS: So what if stricter food regulations made local raw milk illegal and drove small meat processors out of business? Those are exceptions, silly.)

8) Organic and expensive foods are the way to go. Look, Big Food is too powerful for us. So when it creates another aspirational product category, we have to pay up and play along. Especially when we can complain afterwards that healthy food costs too much.

Readers, what have I missed? What would you add?

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b0tias said...

Word! Overweight and obese folks are everywhere talking about how they feel totally in control of how they eat and don't need the government or anyone else to be their 'mommy' but no one will listen to them. Who wouldn't choose to get the snide comments, physical discomforts, shortened lifespan and daily humiliations that come with being really overweight? I don't understand this idea that humans are not completely rational and in control of their actions at all times. Manipulation and addiction are myths people! Myths perpetuated by the people who REALLY want to manipulate and addict you! Except they can't. Yeah. Anyway. Open your eyes!!!

I don't think the government should get involved with people's romantic relationships either. If one partner is beating up the other, and she/he doesn't just leave, they must like it so who are we to judge their pleasures?

Anne @ Unique Gifter said...

It is definitely Big Food's fault that my preferred activity is sitting on my backside drinking beer and therefore gaining weight. I'm glad that you agree ;-)

Joanne said...

I have to say, I love this. If only someone would realize that people have to WANT to change and take responsibility for their own amount of interference is going to convince them to.

KitschenBitsch said...

I just want to say that every time you write "Big Food" I imagine something like the salad of the gods (, albeit anthropomorphized, wearing fedoras, smoking cigarettes, and looking threatening.

chacha1 said...

It is a conspiracy between the government, the food companies, and the pharmaceutical companies to sell us high-calorie, low nutrient foods at 300% of cost to keep us overweight with acid reflux, high cholesterol, and arthritis, so that they can sell us four hundred dollars a month's worth of drugs. Yeah, that must be it.

Anonymous said...

Taxing carbs would put the all powerful profit motive to work towards more/better low-carb choices. 1 cent per carb, figure out that would do?