Monday, November 5, 2007

The Omnivore's Dilemma

I just finished reading The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan. A friend of mine commented a little while back, "The Omnivore's Dilemma rocked our world". I think that's probably the best summary I can give. If you are at all interested in a self-sufficient life style and sustainable living, this book is a must read. It's in three sections--the first is "the industrial" and follows the politics and business of corn growing in America (try reading it at precisely the time in life that you've had to remove corn from your diet due to your baby's sensitivity to it and it'll make ya really mad). The second section is "the pastoral" and lets you follow along the typical running of a truly sustainable and harmonious farm. The third section is "the personal" which follows the author through personally creating a meal from meat he hunted, and fruits/vegetables/mushrooms he gathered. The book is very well written and follows people on their own farms instead of just dealing with the theory. It's quite interesting how he attempts to follow corn grown in a certain field through to a burger at a fast food restaurant (unsuccessfully, of course, since industrial giants won't let you see them make high fructose corn syrup or observe the kill floor of a slaughter house). And it's inspiring to follow the natural order on another farmer's more sustainable operation (where the animals live like they're supposed to and the food is sold locally).

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