We watched Food, Inc. last night. For those of you who haven't seen it, whether you care about where your food comes from or not (though, you really should care), see it ASAP. It's out on DVD after a limited release in theaters.
The movie, with contributors like Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser and Joel Salatin, examines the US food system, and how we've moved so far away from the agrarian society we were when the US came into existence. Only a few companies control the thousands of products we find on supermarket shelves. The animals we eat are treated horribly, bred to fatten up so quickly that they can't move or stand up, and are fed things that go against their nature. Seed companies like Monsanto forbid farmers from doing what they've done forever -- save seeds. Farmers today are not free to farm. Laws, supported by the large corporations like Monsanto, forbid them from growing certain things, or selling certain things, etc.
I went to bed feeling guilty last night, knowing that even though I have a desire to grow/raise my own food, I'm a slacker. It's much easier to go to the grocery store, buy what's in sale, ignore the seasonality of produce, and be on my merry way. It's cheaper to buy the factory farmed meat than it is to buy local organic, humanely raised meat. Though, when I've tried to source local organic meat in the past, it's been difficult, even though I live in the Garden State. Even the farmer's markets and stands around here sell non-local produce year-round.
I need to do better. Make the effort, and stop contributing to the factory farm system.