Holy Cows & Hog Heaven: Globalism and Cheap Food

Decentralization, Bioregionalism,  Globalism

Chapter 13 Discussion

What are you thoughts on this chapter? It’s your turn to ask the questions. 🙂


Cheap Food

Chapter 14 Discussion

“Cheap Food is only an illusion.” Do you agree with this statement?

Should local food be cheaper? How?

Is price everything? What do you look at to make your decisions when buying food?

Do you agree with Joel that the US should eliminate the cheap food policy?



Chapter 15 Discussion

“What is the biggest impediment to your being able to eat farm friendly food?”

Do you think farms should be regulated? Why or why not?

Where and who should draw the line on regulations?

Have you as a farmer or food buyer joined the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund? Have you ever had to use them? Tell us your story.

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About Sheri Salatin

Sheri is married to Daniel Salatin. She is the marketing director at Polyface Farm and stay-at-home mom of three children. Sheri is passionate about clean food and is enjoying working the land along side her husband. When not farming, Sheri can be found reading, writing, sewing, baking and serving in her church family.
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5 Responses to Holy Cows & Hog Heaven: Globalism and Cheap Food

  1. kateswist says:

    I read Joel’s book earlier this summer and returned it to the library so I don’t have a copy in front of me. That being said I have a few comments/ideas regarding the points that are posted.

    Cheap food is an illusion, but American’s are terrible at seeing the big picture. We focus on little sub-groups and compartments and never look up and around. But that is a bigger problem that this book can’t address.

    Local food should cost what the local market can bear. Maybe that is cheaper than the chain grocery store and maybe not. That depends on the place you live and shop.

    I would say the biggest impediment to my purchasing more farm friendly food is my work schedule. I am either at work or traveling to/from work from 7:15 to 5:00 Monday through Friday. The weekly farmer’s market is really hard for me to get to and the local co-op type store is open the hours I’m at work. I could do more and change my schedule occasionally, but it is hard.

    I see Joel’s point in the roadblocks that regulation put on good farmers but I also think a total lack of regulation would create just as many bad practices. No regulation opens up huge area of exploitation and if there are no consequences for bad practice then there is nothing stopping people for doing whatever it takes to make a buck. There has to be a happy medium when it comes to regulations and not throwing the baby out w/ the bath water. Who should draw the line in regulation is a tough one. Ideally you want an equal balance between the farmers themselves and the existing regulatory agencies. I also think it should be local farmers and local bureaucrats and not people who live greater than 60 miles from the area they are regulating. Peer pressure is a great thing in a small area or community. If I know I’m going to see the local bureaucrat at the soccer game because our kids play on the same team I’m less likely to think he’s an evil pencil neck.

    • Sheri Salatin says:

      Just to get some dialogue going here:

      So you don’t think that the public would be “wise” enough to regulate their own food?

      • Shrader Thomas says:

        Granted, I take the time to visit the farms where my food comes from, but I would much rather take regulating my food into my own hands rather than relying on big government agencies to regulate.

        As far as supermarket and “fast food” being cheaper — well, you get what you pay for. I’m not willing to risk my family’s health and well-being to save a few bucks. It’s too important to me.

  2. kateswist says:

    I think the consumer can regulate the safety of food that he/she purchases locally. I just don’t trust multi-national corporations to regulate the safety of the food they try to sell me. I trust that they will do whatever they can to make more profit. If that means putting people at risk I think they will. I don’t trust distributors like WalMart or other chain stores to pull milk off the shelf once it has expired if they weren’t mandated to do so. If I’m buying food close to where its produced the need for regulation is less.

    The bad practices of the few and large fuel regulations for the many and the small. I trust my local farmer, I don’t trust the CEO of Safeway. We should have various levels of regulation where it decreases based on size and proximity to the consumer but we don’t in the US. But I don’t think she should throw out all regulation because it would help the local farmer; at the same time it would be a huge benefit to the large corporations. Both extremes are short-sighted.

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