The End of Food

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The End of Food

by Paul Roberts

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt | May 6, 2009 | Trade Paperback

The End of Food is rated 3.5 out of 5 by 2.
Salmonella-tainted tomatoes, riots, and skyrocketing prices are only the latest in a series of food-related crises that have illuminated the failures of the modern food system. InThe End of Food,Paul Roberts investigates this system and presents a startling truth-how we make, market, and transport our food is no longer compatible with the billions of consumers the system was built to serve.

The emergence of large-scale and efficient food production forever changed our relationship with food and ultimately left a vulnerable and paradoxical system in place. High-volume factory systems create new risks for food-borne illness; high-yield crops generate grain, produce, and meat of declining nutritional quality; and while nearly a billion people are overweight, roughly as many people are starving.

In this vivid narrative, Roberts presents clear, stark visions of the future and helps us prepare to make the necessary decisions to survive the demise of food production as we know it.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 432 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 1.03 in

Published: May 6, 2009

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0547085974

ISBN - 13: 9780547085975

Found in: Commercial Policy

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very eye opening! I picked this up out of curiosity and was completely dumbfounded at the information it contains. The book itself is politically neutral from what I could see, which I appreciate. Although the author is American so no Canadian facts were given but the facts are enough to my attention. I had no idea that the developing world was being held back and in some cases, devastated so severely due to the USA and Europe's hunger for profit at any cost. The Western supermarket (now prevalent globally) today is a testament to the power and efficiency of capitalism and technology. The amazing variety of food available year round where it cannot be grown locally thanks to agribusiness, bio-engineering, and globalization is cheap and that is exactly the problem. Food is so cheap today because of externalities, an economics term referring to the costs not factored into the retail price. At an individual health level the externalities of food are obesity and cancer. At a social level the costs are pollution, soil erosion and desertification, inequality, spiraling unsustainable population growth, and so on. Externalities may be hidden long-term abstract costs, but someone has to pay them sooner or later. If you are uneducated on this subject, like I was/am and still learning more, and you consider yourself someone who cares about the fate of people in poorer countries, read this book. If nothing else maybe it will inspire you to make better choices and be more aware about what big food business is, literally, feeding us.
Date published: 2011-12-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from The End of Food "The End of Food" by Paul Roberts is an informative book about the global food market. Paul Roberts definitely did his work when it came to researching this book. Evidence of the research is found in the large "Notes" section in the back of the book. This book made me think about where exactly the food on my table comes from and if it really is as safe to eat as I think it is. Fear and a bit of anxiety over the safety of my food is a side effect from reading this book. The book does contain a number of what if scenarios that can be alarming, but it is also full of real life events that I vaguely remember happening and it was interesting to read about them in the context of the global food market. Robert Paul’s main theme of the book is to point out that the economic realities of the food system in the world today are not compatible with the growing number of people and the growing number of demands put on that market. As the world grows, especially as a larger percentage of China’s people become wealthier, the demand for meat will outgrow the supply and thus the world supply of grain will also be strained (more meat needed, therefore more grain needed to raise the animals). Some chapters were riveting for me to read, especially the ones with a science theme, but some chapters dragged on, especially the ones about the politics of food. I guess if you are into both science and politics you would love this book, but if you are like me and one tends to catch your interest more than the other you will probably enjoy the book, but not love it
Date published: 2008-09-03

– More About This Product –

The End of Food

by Paul Roberts

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 432 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 1.03 in

Published: May 6, 2009

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0547085974

ISBN - 13: 9780547085975

About the Book

Roberts investigates the modern food system and presents a startling truth--how manufacturers make, market, and transport food is no longer compatible with the billions of consumers the system was built to serve.

Table of Contents

Contents Prologue ix

I 1 Starving for Progress 3 2 It''s So Easy Now 29 3 Buy One, Get One Free 57 4 Tipping The Scales 82

II 5 Eating For Strength 113 6 The End Of Hunger 144 7 We Are What We Eat 175 8 In The Long Run 205

III 9 Magic Pills 239 10 Food Fight 269

Epilogue: Nouvelle Cuisine 298 Acknowledgments 323 Notes 324 Bibliography 363 Index 366

From the Publisher

Salmonella-tainted tomatoes, riots, and skyrocketing prices are only the latest in a series of food-related crises that have illuminated the failures of the modern food system. InThe End of Food,Paul Roberts investigates this system and presents a startling truth-how we make, market, and transport our food is no longer compatible with the billions of consumers the system was built to serve.

The emergence of large-scale and efficient food production forever changed our relationship with food and ultimately left a vulnerable and paradoxical system in place. High-volume factory systems create new risks for food-borne illness; high-yield crops generate grain, produce, and meat of declining nutritional quality; and while nearly a billion people are overweight, roughly as many people are starving.

In this vivid narrative, Roberts presents clear, stark visions of the future and helps us prepare to make the necessary decisions to survive the demise of food production as we know it.

About the Author

Paul Roberts is the author of The End of Oil, a finalist for the New York Public Library''s Helen Bernstein Book Award in 2005. He has written about resource economics and politics for numerous publications, including the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and Rolling Stone, and lectures frequently on business and environmental issues. He lives in Washington State.

Editorial Reviews

An indispensable book. . .the best analysis of the global food economy you are likely to find.-Michael Pollan



Everyone''s got to eat, and this spellbinding book makes it clear why that may be a problem.-Bill McKibben