Food And Technology Essay

Submitted By Jessica-Coyotl
Words: 1132
Pages: 5

Jessica Coyotl
EN 101
Professor Egle
November 5, 2014
Food and Technology

Food labels are not providing enough information for consumers to make an informed choice about what to feed their bodies. Yet, shoppers don’t realize what is really in these food products because we are not being warned. Having knowledge of what you eat can help you have a healthy diet. However, about 59% of global consumers have difficulty understanding the food label's nutritional facts (CPGmatters). Most consumers (83%) always or sometimes check the Nutrition Facts panel when buying foods for the first time (Susan Borra). But does this mean they are using this tool to improve their health? Is this a helpful way to know what is beneficial and what is unacceptable? In the article, “In Defense of Food”, Michael Pollan is warning readers that today we should be very careful and not confuse food for other products disguised as food. In fact, food labels on fraudulent imitation products are becoming too common because they are simply fooling consumers. In this world, there is a lot of secrecy involved. Therefore, a person must take initiative and distinguish real food from the fake and set a pathway for better health and awareness, but is it possible or practical? No, thanks to Pollan, one should be very careful with what he or she eats. Due to the differences in American lifestyles and financial situations, many consumers have difficulty following healthy-eating guidelines. Pollan advice that our dollars would be better spent on quality over the convenience of such fake food products (349). In order to spend our money, one should differentiate between real food and food products so that people can know what they are purchasing. Although he may be correct in this advice, there are other concerns aside from health that consumers have. One of the reasons why people don’t buy real or organic food is because there is a major difference in the prices. Most of the manufactured food products are cheap, so the majority of consumers can afford them. This makes them hard to avoid. Another major issue, is the amount of time a person has. Due to busy work schedules, school and other time-consuming activities in life, consumers rush to get their weekly food supplies and they don’t bother to read the labels. Even if they take a look, they are hard to understand. Additionally, when buying products we usually don’t recognize can take time to become familiar with. In this case, it is our responsibility to be aware of things, but time and money can get in the way of eating healthy. Moreover, the wording on food labels is misleading consumers. Many shoppers buy food products that claim to be healthy, but turn out otherwise. For example, food labels that suggest a product that has nutritional value with healthy sounding words like “natural,” “gluten-free”, “fat free or low fat”, and “whole grain” often mislead shoppers by convincing them they are eating well. One of the tastiest snacks known as “Rice Crispies” are gluten free and cholesterol free, but this gluten and cholesterol free diet itself is not necessarily a healthy diet. So in this case, these words don’t really mean that the food is actually healthy. Pollan says that, food sciences are making traditional foods more complicated than what they usually are but it is still hurting one’s health. He explains that scientists make dairy products low fat, but it is not enough to remove the fat. One has to go through great lengths to preserve the body or creamy texture by working in all kinds of food additives (353). Consumers don’t often lose weight when they eat these food-like products in fact many gain more. This is why the misleading labels are affecting our health. It is easy for people to be tricked into thinking it is ok to eat them. Yet, one should always watch what they eat and not be confused by fraudulent foods because we live in a labeled world where everything is basically described. Another serious