Foo Food Corporations Influence Eating Habits

980 Words 4 Pages
In the food industry, structural and corporate forces highly influence the eating habits of consumers. Though it may appear to individuals that they have a diverse selection of food at their disposal, the choices available are in reality predetermined and selected to serve in the best interests of food corporations and government agencies. Despite the power relations at play, society holds consumers responsible for their diets and any health-related effects. As a result, the discussion of obesity centers on notions of individual responsibility and fault. In her book, Guthman discusses how using the alternative food movement as a solution for obesity that requires individuals to change their eating habits and lifestyle, obscures the larger structural changes required. …show more content…
Due to an abundance of food choices available and increased competition, Nestle explains how companies use factors of taste, cost, convenience, and confusion to successfully sell their food (“Intro” 2002). The factor of taste is achieved when companies appeal to the natural cravings of salt, fat, and sugar and engineer products with these flavors. Processed food, rather than fruits or vegetables, are highly marketed because the costs of production remains low, while the opportunity to create new products by “adding value” exists. For example, companies take advantage of the consumer’s fast-paced lifestyle by marketing convenience in prepackaged and ready to go products. According to Nestle, food companies spend an average of $11 billion on advertising campaigns (2002). Marketing and advertising functions to confuse and skew an individual 's perception of a “healthy diet.” Food corporations spend a large amount of time, money, and resources convincing consumers that their products are the best

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