Professor of Nutrition and Education Joan Dye Gussow from Teachers College, Columbia University, is concerned that much of our food is processed, in other words, broken down into component parts by multinational food manufacturers and then reassembled with listings on the package of nutrients that we are told are good for us. At our NOHA meeting last April on "Modern Agriculture, Food Processing, and the Quality of Food," she stated:

What does it mean to the future of the food system that nutrition professionals as well as consumers, have become so fixated in looking at parts of food—fat, fiber, cholesterol, beta carotene, zinc, antioxidants—that they have lost sight of what is going on in the food supply.

As cheaply as they can anywhere in the world, multinationals produce the food components. Professor Gussow described agribusiness with its complete disregard of sustainability and its mining of the soil. She compared the multinationals to the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. He would eat at one place at the table, then leave his dirty dishes and move to the next place. When Alice asked what would happen when he had gone all the way around the table, he changed the subject.

Professor Gussow points out that most people don't grow food and don't realize how it is grown. They forget about the growing of single crops with chemicals until the soil is ruined and abandoned. They don't know how agribusiness treats chickens, cattle, and pigs, if they did, it would turn their stomachs. She advises growing much of one's own produce and also going with children to small, local farms where everyone can see food growing. She does not advise vegetarianism because we evolved eating both plants and animals; so, animals can give us excellent food while themselves eating plants too rough for us to digest.

Article from NOHA NEWS, Vol. XVIII, No. 4, Fall 1993, page 2.