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Just Giving Consumers the Cheap Food They Want?
April 18th, 2010

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Dear John,

You and the author of Fast Food Nation find fault with the fast food chains and supermarkets for the food they sell. But they are simply giving customers the cheap food they want. If you want to blame anyone, blame human nature.

Bruce

Dear Bruce,

The consumer demand to which you refer has been manufactured. If the fast food chains and food outlets are simply providing what customers want, then why do they spend billions of dollars advertising? Have you noticed how often it is the least healthy foods that are the most heavily advertised? Last year, Kellogg’s spent $40 million to promote a single heavily sugared breakfast cereal – Frosted Flakes. The dairy industry spent $190 million on the “milk mustache” ads. McDonald’s spent nearly $1 billion advertising its products. (The National Cancer Institute, in comparison, spent $1 million promoting fruits and vegetables.)

What would happen if the glut of advertising dollars that is now used to sell grease, sugar, and processed foods was used instead to promote a healthy, wholesome, nutritious diet?

Yours for a healthy world,

John

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