I came across this video online yesterday. It simply addresses the reasons (unreasonable as they may be) that “health food is expensive” while cheap, processed garbage food is more affordable (… at the time).
1) I do not think whole foods are expensive*, or that eating healthy has to be. One of the missions of STK! is to show people how to use ingredients most people are familiar with or can find easily and affordable to make meals, when they may otherwise think of vegetables as a side dish only.
*Whole plant foods can be incredibly affordable especially if bought in season and/or from a local market.
2) I would never be so presumptuous to make a statement like “People should spend money on better food and less on XYZ”. I may believe that, but I also know that I have a different lifestyle from a single mom working three low-wage jobs; a wealthy businessman who can go to Whole Foods for all organic food; a teenager living and thus eating according to the rules of her parents. We are all at different places in our lives financially: I aim to put forth meals that can be made, and/or adapted, to fit most budgets.
3) A perceived “problem” with whole foods is that people don’t know what to do with them. So we can encourage someone to spend what money they have on greens, grains, dried beans, etc… but then they actually have to eat them or the money and nutrition is wasted. Cooking education must go hand-in-hand when buying better food is the mission.
But all that said, it’s still truth that we live in a world of 99cent “Value” menus that provide a lot of calories for a little money.
If you’ve ever seen Food Inc., you may recall a scene in which a low income family travels to the grocery store with a limited budget. They pick up a bag of apples, then agree they can buy one whole meal from a fast food chain for the same amount of money as the apples. They put the apples down. In the next scene they are eating their fast food meals in the car on the drive home.
And that scene illustrated an unfortunate truth: sometimes the worst food is much cheaper than the most basic foods.
It doesn’t make any sense.
It’s enraging, horrible, disgusting. It’s completely backwards.
In less than four minutes, this video explains why it happens:
“How is it that something with 39 different ingredients can be cheaper than something you just pull out of the ground?”
You can visit Calpirg.org or CLICK HERE to send an electronic message to the Senator to stop junk food subsidies.