Food, Inc. Script - Dialogue Transcript

Voila! Finally, the Food, Inc. script is here for all you fans of the eye-opening documentary featuring Michael Pollan and many others. This puppy is a transcript that was painstakingly transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of the movie to get the dialogue. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and all that jazz, so if you have any corrections, feel free to drop me a line. At least you'll have some Food, Inc. quotes (or even a monologue or two) to annoy your coworkers with in the meantime, right?

And swing on back to Drew's Script-O-Rama afterwards -- because reading is good for your noodle. Better than Farmville, anyway.

Food, Inc. Script


Michael Pollan: The way we eat
has changed more in the last 50 years

than in the previous 10,000.

But the image that's used
to sell the food,

it is still the imagery
of agrarian America.

You go into the supermarket
and you see pictures of farmers,

the picket fence, the silo,

the '30s farmhouse
and the green grass.

It's the spinning
of this pastoral fantasy.

The modern American

has on average
47,000 products.

There are no seasons
in the American supermarket.

Now there are tomatoes
all year round,

grown halfway around the world,
picked when it was green,

and ripened
with ethylene gas.

Although it looks
like a tomato,

it's kind of
a notional tomato.

I mean, it's the idea
of a tomato.

In the meat aisle,
there are no bones anymore.

Eric Schlosser:
There is this deliberate veil,

this curtain,
that's dropped between us

and where our food
is coming from.

The industry doesn't want
you to know the truth

about what you're eating,

because if you knew,
you might not want to eat it.

Pollan: If you follow
the food chain back

from those shrink-wrapped
packages of meat,

you find a very
different reality.

The reality is a factory.

It's not a farm.
It's a factory.

That meat is
being processed

by huge multinational

that have very little to do
with ranches and farmers.

Schlosser: Now our food is coming
from enormous assembly lines

where the animals and the workers are
being abused.

And the food has become
much more dangerous

in ways that are being
deliberately hidden from us.

Troy Roush: You've got a small group
of multinational corporations

who control
the entire food system.

From seed
to the supermarket,

they're gaining
control of food.

This isn't just about what we're eating.

This is about what
we're allowed to say,

what we're allowed
to know.

It's not just our health
that's at risk.

Carole Morison: The companies don't
want farmers talking.

They don't want
this story told.

How about a nice chicken club sandwich
made with fresh cooked chicken?

You know,
that's a nice idea,

but I think what
I'd really like

- is a burger.
- All right.

Schlosser's voice:
My favorite meal to this day

remains a hamburger
and french fries.

I had no idea that
a handful of companies

had changed what we eat
and how we make our food.

I've been eating
this food all my life

without having any idea
where it comes from,

any idea how powerful
this industry is.

And it was the idea

of this world deliberately
hidden from us.

I think that's one
of the reasons why

I became
an investigative reporter,

was to take the veil--
lift the veil away

from important subjects
that are being hidden.

(film projector clicking)

The whole industrial food system

really began
with fast food.

In the 1930s,

a new form
of restaurant arose

and it was called
the drive-in.

The McDonald brothers had
a very successful drive-in,

but they decided
to cut costs and simplify.

So they fired
all their carhops,

they got rid of most
of the things on the menu

and they created
a revolutionary idea

to how to run
a restaurant.

They basically brought
the factory system

to the back
of the restaurant kitchen.

They trained each worker
to just do one thing

again and again
and again.

By having workers
who only had to do one thing,

they could pay them
a low wage

and it was very easy
to find someone to replace them.

It was inexpensive food,
it tasted good

and this McDonald's
fast food restaurant

was a huge
huge success.

That mentality
of uniformity,

and cheapness

applied widely
and on a large scale

has all kinds of
unintended consequences.


When McDonald's is
the largest purchaser

of ground beef
in the United States

and they want
their hamburgers

to taste, everywhere,
exactly the same,

they change how
ground beef is produced.

The McDonald's corporation

is the largest purchaser
of potatoes

and one of the largest
purchasers of pork,

chicken, tomatoes,
lettuce, even apples.

These big big
fast food chains

want big suppliers.

And now there are essentially
a handful of companies

our food system.

In the 1970s,
the top five beef-packers

controlled only
about 25% of the market.

Today, the top four

control more than 80%
of the market.

You see the same thing
happening now in pork.

Even if you don't eat
at a fast food restaurant,

you're now eating meat
that's being produced

by this system.

You look at the labels

and you see Farmer this,
Farmer that--

it's really just
three or four companies

that are controlling
the meat.

We've never had
food companies this big

and this powerful
in our history.

Tyson, for example,

is the biggest meat-packing company
in the history of the world.

The industry changed the entire way that
chicken are raised.

Birds are now raised
and slaughtered

in half the time
they were 50 years ago,

but now they're
twice as big.

People like to eat
white meat,

so they redesigned
the chicken

to have large breasts.

- (cheeping)
- They not only changed the chicken,

they changed the farmer.

Today, chicken farmers
no longer control their birds.


A company like Tyson

owns the birds from
the day they're dropped off

until the day that
they're slaughtered.


Let me go to the top.

- Man: This is the Chicken--
- National Chicken Council.

The chicken industry
has really set a model

for the integration
of production, processing

and marketing
of the products

that other industries
are now following

because they see that we have achieved
tremendous economies.

In a way, we're not
producing chickens;

we're producing food.

It's all highly mechanized.

So all the birds
coming off those farms

have to be almost
exactly the same size.

What the system of intensive
production accomplishes

is to produce
a lot of food

on a small amount of land

at a very affordable price.

Now somebody explain to me
what's wrong with that.

Smells like money to me.


16 chicken houses
sit here.

And Chuck's son has
four over the top of this hill.

The chicken industry
came in here

and it's helped
this whole community out.

Here's my chicken
houses here.

I have about
300,000 chickens.


- What do you want?
- (barks)

We have a contract
with Tyson.

They've been growing chickens
for many many years.

It's all a science.
They got it figured out.

If you can grow
a chicken in 49 days,

why would you want one you gotta grow
in three months?

More money
in your pocket.

(chickens clucking)

These chickens
never see sunlight.

They're pretty much
in the dark all the time.

Man: So you think they just
want to keep us out?

I don't know.

If I knew,
I'd tell you.

It would be nice if y'all could see
what we really do,

but as far
as y'all going in,

we can't let you
do that.

I understand why farmers
don't want to talk--

because the company can
do what it wants to do

as far as pay goes
since they control everything.

But it's just gotten
to the point

that it's not right
what's going on

and I've just
made up my mind.

I'm gonna say
what I have to say.

I understand why others
don't want to do it.

And I'm just to a point

that it doesn't
matter anymore.

Something has
to be said.

(loud clucking)

It is nasty in here.

There's dust
flying everywhere.

There's feces

This isn't farming.

This is just
mass production,

like an assembly line
in a factory.

(fans whirring)

When they grow
from a chick

and in seven weeks you've
got a five-and-a-half- pound chicken,

their bones
and their internal organs

can't keep up
with the rapid growth.

A lot of these chickens here,
they can take a few steps

and then they plop down.
It's because they can't

keep up all the weight
that they're carrying.


That's normal.

There's antibiotics
that's put into the feed

and of course that passes
through the chicken.

The bacteria
builds up a resistance,

so antibiotics
aren't working anymore.

I have become allergic
to all antibiotics

and can't take 'em.


When it's dark inside the houses,

the chickens lay down.
It's less resistance

when they're
being caught.

Traditionally, it's been
African-American men.

Now we're seeing more
and more Latino catchers--

undocumented workers.

From their point of view,
they don't have any rights

and they're just not
gonna complain.

The companies like
these kind of workers.

It doesn't matter
if the chickens get sick.

All of the chickens
will go to the plant

for processing.

The companies keep
the farmers under their thumb

because of the debt
that the farmers have.

To build one poultry house

is anywhere from $280,to $300,000 per house.

And once you make
your initial investment,

the companies
constantly come back

with demands
of upgrades

for new equipment,

and the grower
has no choice.

They have to do it

or you're threatened
with loss of a contract.

This is how they keep
the farmers under control.

It's how they keep them
spending money,

going to the bank
and borrowing more money.

The debt just
keeps building.

To have no say
in your business,

it's degrading.

It's like being
a slave to the company.

Pollan: The idea that you would
need to write a book

telling people
where their food came from

is just a sign of how far removed
we've become.

It seems to me that we're entitled
to know about our food--

"Who owns it?
How are they making it?

Can I have a look
in the kitchen?"

When I wanted to understand
the industrial food system,

what I set about doing
was very simple.

I wanted to trace
the source of my food.

When you go through
the supermarket,

what looks like this cornucopia
of variety and choice is not.

There is an illusion
of diversity.

There are only
a few companies involved

and there're
only a few crops involved.

What really
surprised me most

as I followed that food
back to its source,

I kept ending up
in the same place,

and that was
a cornfield in Iowa.

So much of our
industrial food

turns out to be clever
rearrangements of corn.

Corn has conquered the world
in a lot of ways.

It is a remarkable plant.

100 years ago,
a farmer in America

could grow maybe 20 bushels of corn
on an acre.

Today, 200 bushels
is no problem.

That's an astonishing

for which breeders
deserve credit,

for which fertilizer
makers deserve credit,

for which pesticide makers
all deserve credit.

In the United States today,

30% of our land base
is being planted to corn.

That's largely driven
by government policy,

government policy that,
in effect,

allows us to produce corn
below the cost of production.

The truth of the matter is
we're paid to overproduce,

and it was caused by

these large
multinational interests.

The reason our government's
promoting corn--

the Cargills, the ADMs,
Tyson, Smithfield--

they have an interest in purchasing corn
below the cost of production.

They use that interest and that
extensive amount of money they have

to lobby Congress to give us the kind
of farm bills we now have.

A "farm bill,"

which should really be
called a "food bill,"

codifies the rules
of the entire food economy.

Farm policy is always focused
on these commodity crops

because you can
store them.

We encourage farmers to grow
as much corn as they can grow,

to get big,
to consolidate.

We subsidize farmers
by the bushel.

We produced a lot of corn

and they came up
with uses for it.

Larry Johnson:
We are now engineering our foods.

We know where to turn to
for certain traits

like mouth feel and flavor.

And we bring all of these
pieces together

and engineer new foods

that don't stale
in the refrigerator,

don't develop rancidity.

Of course the biggest advance
in recent years

was high-fructose
corn syrup.

You know,
I would venture to guess

if you go and look
on the supermarket shelf,

I'll bet you 90% of them

would contain either
a corn or soybean ingredient,

and most of the time
will contain both.

Corn is the great raw material.

You get that big fat
kernel of starch

and you can break that down
and reassemble it.

You can make
high-fructose corn syrup.

You can make maltodextrin

and diglycerides
and xanthan gum

and ascorbic acid.

All those obscure ingredients
on the processed food--

it's remarkable how many of them can be
made from corn.

Plus, you can feed it
to animals.

Roush: Corn is the main component
in feed ingredients

whether it's chicken,
hogs, cattle-- you name it.

Pollan: Increasingly, we're feeding
the corn to the fish

whether we're eating the tilapia
or the farmed salmon.

We're teaching fish
how to eat corn.

The fact that we had
so much cheap corn

really allowed us to drive
down the price of meat.

I mean, the average American
is eating over 200 lbs

of meat per person
per year.

That wouldn't
be possible

had we not fed them
this diet of cheap grain.

Since you're selling corn
at below the price of production,

the feedlot operator
can buy corn

at a fraction
of what it costs to grow,

so that all the animals
are sucked off

of all the farms
in the Midwest.

There is a spiderweb

of roads
and train tracks

all around the country
moving corn

from where it's being grown
to these CAFOs.

Cows are not designed
by evolution to eat corn.

They're designed
by evolution to eat grass.

And the only reason
we feed them corn

is because corn is
really cheap

and corn makes them
fat quickly.

(cow moos)

Where are you putting your hand?

I'm actually
inside the rumen--

that first compartment
of the stomach.

And it's--

it's not--

it's kind of hard to see.

You can see
the liquid part here.

Man: Wow.

- Does that hurt the cow?
- No.

There's microorganisms--

bacteria in the rumen,
millions of 'em.

The animals evolved

on consuming grass.

There's some research
that indicates

that a high-corn diet
results in

E. coli that are

And these would be
the more harmful E. coli.

So you feed corn to cattle

and E. coli, which is a very
common bug, evolves,

a certain
mutation occurs

and a strain called
the "E. coli 0157:h7"

appears on
the world stage.

And it's a product of the diet
we're feeding cattle on feedlots

and it's a product
of feedlot life.

The animals
stand ankle deep

in their manure
all day long.

So if one cow has it,

the other cows
will get it.

When they get
to the slaughterhouse,

their hides are
caked with manure.

And if the slaughterhouse
is slaughtering

400 animals an hour,

how do you keep
that manure

from getting
onto those carcasses?

And that's how the manure
gets in the meat.

And now this thing
that wasn't in the world

is in the food system.

A fast-food nightmare
may be getting worse.

A two-year-old child died
today in Seattle.

And the killer? Tainted meat from
Jack In The Box hamburgers.

A nationwide recall today

for more than 140 tons
of ground beef.

A half a million pounds of ground beef--

Man #2: Today, nationwide recalls
of Con Agra ground beef.

E. coli isn't just in ground beef now--

it's been found
in spinach, apple juice--

and this is really because of the runoff
from our factory farms.

90 confirmed cases
of E. coli poisoning.

Central to it all--
raw, bagged spinach.

Man #3: This is the 20th
E. coli outbreak with leafy greens

in just the last decade.

Schlosser: For years during
the Bush administration,

the chief of staff
at the USDA

was the former
chief lobbyist

to the beef industry
in Washington;

the head of the F.D.A. was
the former executive vice president

of the National
Food Processors Association.

These regulatory agencies

are being controlled
by the very companies

that they're supposed
to be scrutinizing.

Woman: ConAgra, which recently
recalled peanut butter

with salmonella,

was aware of problems
in its plant two years ago.

There's always been food poisoning.

As more and more

is being applied
to the production of food,

you would think
it would be getting safer,

not more contaminated.

But the processing plants
have gotten bigger and bigger.

it's just perfect
for taking bad pathogens

and spreading them
far and wide.

Woman: The recall of frozen
hamburger now includes

22 million pounds.

Enough meat to make
a fast-food hamburger

for every adult in America
is being recalled.

Schlosser: In the 1970s,
there were literally thousands

of slaughterhouses
in the United States.

Today we have
13 slaughterhouses

that process
the majority of beef

that is sold
in the United States.

The hamburger of today,

it has pieces of thousands
of different cattle

ground up in that
one hamburger patty.

The odds increase exponentially
that one of those animals

was carrying
a dangerous pathogen.

It's remarkable
how toothless

our regulatory agencies are
when you look closely at it,

and that's how
the industry wants it.

Patricia Buck: This is the USDA
building up here.

Did Josh say how much time
he thought we'd get?

- Five minutes.
- Five minutes.

Well, maybe as much as 15.
Got to be on time for that meeting.

- It starts a 4:00.
- Okay.

So if I start
going like that

- or start shuffling papers, it's time.
- I know, it's time.

Thank you!
Thank you.

I'm a registered Republican.

I've always been
fairly conservative.

I never thought
I would be doing this

and I certainly never
thought I would be

working so closely
with my mom.

- We go this way? Okay.
- Yes, we go this way.

Made a mistake--
I think that's the way we want to go.

Kowalcyk: My mom and I,
our relationship has

taken on
a whole new dimension.

2421? 2421.

Here we are.

- Hi.
- Hello.

- How are you?
- I'm Pat.

- Hi, Pat.
- Barb Kowalcyk.

- Hi, Barb.
- DeGette: After the first big push

to establish food standards,
people just got complacent.

We reduced funding
for the FDA.

We've relied increasingly

on self-policing for all
of these industries.

And now
we just have, really,

lost our system.

You're really one
of the champions on the hill

for food safety and it's a very
important cause.

It's very personal
to me and my family.

Our food safety advocacy
work started six years ago

when my two-and-
a-half-year-old son Kevin

was stricken
with E. coli 0157:h
and went from being
a perfectly healthy

beautiful little boy--

and I have a small picture
with me today

that was taken two weeks
before he got sick.

He went from that
to being dead in 12 days.

In July 2001,

our family took
a vacation.

Had we known what was
in store for us,

we would have
never gone home.

We ended up eating three hamburgers
before he got sick.

We started to see blood
in Kevin's diarrhea,

so we took him
to the emergency room.

And they said,
"We've gotten

the culture back
from Kevin's stool,

and he has
hemorrhagic E. coli."

They came in
and informed us

that Kevin's kidneys were
starting to fail.

Kevin received
his first dialysis treatment.

He was not allowed
to really drink water.

We had these
little sponges

and we were allowed to dip that
into a cup of water

and then give him that.

He bit the head off
of one of them.

You've never seen
someone beg.

He begged for water.
It was all he could talk about.

They wouldn't let anybody
bring any beverage into the room

because-- I mean, it was
all he would talk about,

was... water.

(waves lapping)

I don't know if he knew
what was happening to him...

and I hope--
I don't know.

To watch
this beautiful child go

from being perfectly healthy
to dead in 12 days--

it was just unbelievable

that this could happen
from eating food.

What was kind of adding
more insult to injury--

it took us almost
two or three years

and hiring
a private attorney

to actually find out that
we matched a meat recall.

On August 1st, my son was already
in the hospital.

They did an E. coli test
at the plant that was positive.

They didn't end up
recalling that meat

until August 27th,

16 days after he died.

If we have some more hearings--
which I'm sure we will--

I'd love to have
you come and testify.

- Keep fighting.
- Thank you. You too.

Kowalcyk: You never get over
the death of your child.

You find a new normal.

- Buck: This way?
- Yes.

- We're going this way?
- Mm-hmm.

We put faith in our government

to protect us,

and we're not
being protected

at a most basic level.

In 1998, the USDA implemented
microbial testing

for salmonella
and E. coli 0157:h7.

The idea was that if a plant
repeatedly failed these tests,

that the USDA would
shut the plant down

because they obviously had an ongoing
contamination problem.

The meat
and poultry associations

immediately took
the USDA to court.

The courts
basically said

the USDA didn't have
the authority

to shut down the plants.

What it meant was that

you could have a pound
of meat or poultry products

that is a petri dish
of salmonella

and the USDA
really can't do anything about it.

A new law was introduced
in direct response

and this law became known
as Kevin's Law.

It seems like such a clear-cut,
common sense type thing.

- How are things going?
- Fine fine.

We've been working for six years

and it still
hasn't passed.

I sense that
there may be

an opportunity--
an enhanced opportunity--

to get this signed
into law this time.

I think that from the standpoint
of the consumer,

a lot of people would
support the idea

of paying a little more
if they could be guaranteed

a higher standard
of safety.

- Kowalcyk: Yeah.
- But I also know

that there are
other players

- in the food production chain...
- Kowalcyk: We know.

...that tend
to worry about that,

because it's gonna be seen as an add-on
to their costs.

I think
the advantage here is--

Sometimes it does feel like

industry was more protected
than my son.

That's what motivated me
to become an advocate.

In the past year alone,
there have been

a multitude of food-borne
illness outbreaks

which have resulted
in significant losses.

our current approach

to food oversight
and protection

is not meeting the needs
of American families.

It's really hard for me
to tell Kevin's story.

But the only way
I'm going to be able

to prevent it from happening
to other people

is to go out there
and speak about it.


Six are elementary school students,
one is a sibling,

and there's another one
in another county

in Kentucky, so...

It will be seven years

since my son died.

All I wanted
the company to do

was say "We're sorry.

We produced
this defective product

that killed your child,
and this is what

we're going to do to make sure
it doesn't happen again."

That's all we wanted,

and they couldn't
give us that.

Pollan: The industrial food system
is always looking

for greater efficiency,
but each new step in efficiency

leads to problems.

If you take feedlot cattle off
of their corn diet,

give them grass
for five days,

they will shed 80% of the E. coli
in their gut.

But of course that's not what
the industry does.

The industry's approach is--

when it has a systematic
problem like that--

is not to go back and see
what's wrong with the system,

it's to come up some high-tech fixes
that allow the system to survive.

The 5x5 product surge tank--

low level. Low level.

(man speaks
over radio)

Eldon Roth:
This is our operations center.

We control all
of our plants from here.

Where's Chicago?
Here's Chicago,

Georgia, Utah, Kansas,

Texas, L.A., Ohio.

We control all levels
of the gearboxes,

the speed of motors--

we can change
those all from here.

We built something that--

from a food-safety

we think we're
ahead of everybody.

We think we can lessen
the incidents

of E. coli 0157:h7.


But I just started
working with ammonia

and ammonia hydroxide.

Ammonia kills bacteria,

so it became
a processing tool.

I'm really a mechanic.

That's really what I am.

We design
our own machinery.


This is our finished product.

Man: Is your meat in most
of the hamburgers in the country?

Roth: 70%.

In five years,
we think we'll be in 100%.

We do have
some competitors.

I think
we're gonna beat them.

- (buzzes)
- Roth: Again, it's a marriage

of science
and technology.

(man speaking
over radio)

I want dollar meal--

- five rodeo cheeseburgers...
- Woman: Five rodeos. Okay.

...two chicken sandwich.

- Woman: Anything else?
- Man: Two small drinks,

and give me
a large Dr. Pepper.

- $11.48.
- Thank you.

First window.
Thank you.

Maria Gonzalez: We didn't
even think about healthy eating

because we used to think
everything was healthy.

- Here you go.
- Thank you.

- Have a nice day.
- You too. Thank you very much.

Now that I know that the food is

really unhealthy for us,

I feel guilty
giving it to my kids.

But we don't have time to cook
because we leave at 6:00.

We don't get home
until 9:00, 10:00 at night.

When you have only
a dollar to spend

and you have
two kids to feed,

either you go
to the market

and try to find
something that's cheap

or just go straight
through a drive-thru

and get two small
hamburgers for them

and "Okay, here.
Eat them."

This is what's
gonna fill her up,

not that one single item
at the market.

Look at the broccoli.

It's too expensive, man.

- What do you want to eat then?
- Mama.

First check to see how many are there
for a pound.

- Uh, we're not getting it.
- Why not?

You'd only get
two or three.

- No. Come on.
- Aww!

Maria: We can find candy
that's cheaper.

We can find chips
that are cheaper.

The sodas are
really cheap.

Sometimes you look
at a vegetable and say

"Okay, we can get
two hamburgers over here

for the same amount
of price."

Why is it that you can buy

a double-cheeseburger
at McDonald's for 99¢,

and you can't even get
a head of broccoli for 99¢?

- You want the small one?
- We've skewed our food system

to the bad calories

and it's not
an accident.

I mean, the reasons that those calories
are cheaper is

because those are the ones
we're heavily subsidizing.

And this is directly tied
to the kind of agriculture

that we're practicing

and the kind
of farm policies we have.

All those
snack-food calories are

the ones that come
from the commodity crops--

from the wheat,
from the corn

and from the soybeans.

By making those calories
really cheap,

that's one of the reasons
that the biggest predictor

of obesity is
income level.

Over the course
of human history,

we were struggling
to make sure we had

enough food
and enough calories

for a sizable percentage
of the human race.

Now the problem is
too many calories.

The industry
blames obesity

on a crisis of personal

But when you're
engineering foods

you are pressing
our evolutionary buttons.

The fact is
we're hardwired

to go for three tastes--

salt, fat and sugar.

These things are
very rare in nature

Now sugar is
available 24/
in tremendous quantities.

We're eating hundreds of pounds
of the stuff a year.

This diet
of high-fructose corn syrup

and refined carbohydrates

leads to these spikes
of insulin

and, gradually, a wearing down
of the system

by which our body
metabolizes sugar.

My husband's diabetic.

One of my main concerns is

he could lose his sight.

He does get into--
sometimes he's shaking,

so I'm afraid that he's gonna start
not being able to drive,

'cause that's what
he does for a profession.

We have to consider
his medicine.

What is it, $70?

50 pills costs me
about $130.

Maria: But he's on two
different types of pills.

for one pill

and then $100-
and-something for another.

That takes a lot
of our income away.

We're really tight
from either

paying for his medicine
to be healthy

or buying vegetables
to be healthy.

So which one
should we do?

It's hard to see my dad
suffer with diabetes

and stuff like that.

And it's really sad to see
that my sister might have it.

There's something
that's going on

in the way
that we live our lives,

where we play,
where we buy our food

and the types of food
that we're able to buy

that is causing
this epidemic.

It's not just
our community.

It's not just Baldwin Park.
It's everywhere.

How many of us
know one person

in our family
with diabetes?

How about two?

Keep your hand--

It used to be that
type 2 diabetes

only affected adults.

And now it's affecting children
at epidemic proportions.

(kids laughing)

(birds chirping)

(chickens clucking)

Joel Salatin:
Everything we've done

in modern industrial

is to grow it faster,
fatter, bigger, cheaper.

Nobody's thinking
about E. coli,

type 2 diabetes
and the ecological health

of the whole system.

We're outsourcing

autonomous farmer
decision making--

we're outsourcing that
to corporate boardrooms

in big cities
1,000 miles away

where people make decisions
and don't live

with the consequences
of those decisions.

(cows mooing)

Everything is
grass based.

You know, they don't eat
corn, dead cows

or chicken manure like they feed
right here in the valley--

or dead chickens.

They actually eat
grass, forage--

you know, clover,
grass, herbs.

They're herbivores.

If they were eating corn,

you're gonna have to harvest that corn,
transport that corn,

then you're gonna have to haul
all that manure somewhere

that comes out
the back end.

Here... it's--

there-- there is
the whole thing.

I mean the cow is--
she's fertilizing.

She's mowing. We don't have to
spread any manure.

We don't have to harvest it--
she's harvesting it.

It's all real time--
real solar dollars.

The industrial food system

gradually became
so noisy, smelly,

not a person-friendly place,

that the people
who operate those plants

don't want anybody
to go there,

because then people would
see the ugly truth.

When that occurred,

then we lost
all the integrity

and all the accountability
in the food system.

If we put glass walls

on all the megaprocessing

we would have a different food system
in this country.

(knife zinging)

- (clucking)
- (people chatting)

We have allowed ourselves

to become so disconnected
and ignorant

- about something that is as intimate...
- (whirring)

- the food that we eat.
- (bubbling)

What a difference
this is to be out here

in the fresh air,

birds singing
in the trees, you know?

But you see,
according to the U.S.D.A,

this is unsanitary

because it's open
to the air.

They tried
to close us down.

One of the biggest
showdowns we had was

when they tried
to close us down

because this was

Can you imagine?

So we had them cultured
at a local microbiology lab.

Ours averaged
133 C.F.U.

and the ones
from the store

averaged 3600.

Of course, those have been through
40 trillion baths.

Ours haven't seen
any chlorine.

A lot of people wonder
"Is this real?

I mean, can you really
feed the world?"

That whole thing is
such a specious argument

because, yes,

we're every bit
as efficient,

if you plug in

all of the inefficiencies
of the industrial system.

I've had people come up
at farmer's markets

and say "What?
$3 a dozen for eggs?"

And they're drinking
a 75¢ can of soda.

Hey, pig.
Hey, piggles.


Hey, pigs.

I'm always struck by how successful
we have been

at hitting the bull's-eye
of the wrong target.

I mean we have learned--
for example,

in cattle we have
learned how to--

how to plant,

and harvest corn

using global positioning
satellite technology,

and nobody sits back
and asks

"But should we be
feeding cows corn?"

We've become
a culture of technicians.

We're all into--

we're all
into the how of it

and nobody's
stepping back

and saying "But why?"


I mean, a culture
that just views a pig

as a pile of protoplasmic
inanimate structure

to be manipulated
by whatever creative design

that humans can foist
on that critter

will probably view

within its community

and other cultures in the community
of nations

with the same type
of disdain,


and controlling-type


Eduardo Peña:
The town where the plant is located

is a small town
called Tar Heel

in the middle of a very
economically-depressed area.

Smithfield has mastered

the art of picking
and choosing

a workforce
that they can exploit,

initially from
the local workforce--

the poor whites,
the poor black.

They went through
that workforce very quickly.

Now they have to
bus their workers

all the way from Dentsville,
South Carolina,

to Clinton,
North Carolina.

You have to draw a circle 100 miles
in diameter,

and that's where all of your workers
are coming from.

(people chatting)

Man: They have the same
mentality towards workers

as they do towards the hogs.


Man: You know, the hog, they don't
really have to worry about their comfort

because they're temporary.
They're gonna be killed.

And they have the same viewpoint
to the worker.

You're not worried about the longevity
of the worker

because, to them,
everything has an end.

- (clicks, whirring)
- (squealing)

Man: When you've got 2000 hogs
an hour going through

employees, because they're handling
these guts so much,

they get infections in
their fingernails and all.

All their fingernails
separate from their fingers.

Man #2: You're covered
with blood, feces, urine.

It's easy
to get hurt down there.

Man: You're doing
that same movement

for that same piece
of the hog

and it's nonstop,
you know.

Basically you're treated
as a human machine.

Man #3:
You get people that can't afford

to leave from out there,
and Smithfield knows this.

And that's what
they hold over you.

100 years ago

when Upton Sinclair wrote
"The Jungle"

there was a beef trust
that wielded enormous power.

Immigrants from Eastern Europe
were being abused

in the absence of any kind of
government regulation

There were horrible
disfiguring injuries

and even deaths.

Pollan: Things got better.
They slowly got better.

Teddy Roosevelt took on the beef trust.

Labor unions slowly organized
meatpacking workers

and turned it into one of the best
industrial jobs

in the United States.

By the 1950s
to be a meatpacking worker

was like being
an auto worker

who has a good wage,
good benefits, pension.

And then what happened?

Well, the meat-packing
companies got bigger

in order to serve the needs
of the fast-food industry,

which was
its biggest customer.

Some of the meat-packing
companies like IBP

borrowed the same sort
of labor practices

from the fast food

cutting wages, making sure there
were no unions,

speeding up production,

and having the worker
do the same task

again and again
and again.

And meat-packing is now

one of the most dangerous jobs
in the United States.

The meat-packing industry
also recruited

a new set of immigrants--
illegal immigrants

and recent immigrants
from Mexico.

Many of the illegal immigrants
coming to America

were corn farmers
in Mexico.

NAFTA led to a flooding
of the Mexican market

with cheap American corn.

It's put more than a million and a half
Mexican farmers out of work.

They couldn't compete with this
cheap corn coming from America.


Pollan: So what happens to those million
and a half Mexican farmers?

Meat packers like IBP,

National Beef
and Monfort

began actively recruiting
in Mexico.

Companies advertised
on the radio

and in newspapers.

IBP set up
a bus service

in Mexico to bring workers
into the United States.

For years the government
turned a blind eye

to the recruitment
of immigrants

by the meat-packing industry.

But now, when there's
an anti-immigrant movement,

they're cracking down
all of a sudden,

but they're not cracking down
on these companies.

The government's cracking down
on the workers.

(clears throat)

Peña: Immigration agents are
arresting Smithfield workers

- at this trailer park.
- (people chatting)

This is an agreement

between Smithfield
and Immigrations authorities.

They get rid
of 15 workers per day,

but you don't see
any massive raids.

That way it doesn't affect
the production line.

- (door closes)
- (engine starts)

- (Peña speaking Spanish)
- (car honking)

- Sir, we are trying--
- She asked me a question.

She is asking us
questions, not you.

I don't see anybody arresting
no Smithfield managers.

Nobody in the plant
that had anything to do

with the fact that
those workers were hired

is being arrested.

What we see today
is workers

who were producing for
this company and working hard--

those are the people
who get arrested.

(man yelling
in Spanish)

Peña: We want to pay
the cheapest price for our food.

We don't understand that
that comes at a price.

These workers, they've been
here for 10, 15 years

processing your bacon,
your holiday ham

and now they're getting picked up
like they're criminals.

(car starts)

And these companies are
making billions of dollars.

Is cheapness everything that there is?

Who wants to buy
the cheapest car?

We're willing
to subsidize

the food system
to create the "mystique"

of cheap food,

when actually
it's very expensive food

when you add up
the environmental costs

societal costs,
health costs.

The industrial food
is not honest food.

It's not priced honestly.
It's not produced honestly.

It's not processed honestly.

There's nothing honest
about that food.

I can't think of a better use
for a Smithfield box.

It was about a five-hour drive

maybe 300, 400 miles.

So yeah.

It's worth it.

Salatin: I have no desire
to scale up or get bigger.

My desire is to produce
the best food in the world

and heal.

And if in doing so

more people come to our corner
and want stuff,

then heaven help me figure out
how to meet the need

without compromising
the integrity.

That-- that's where I am.

I have
absolutely no desire

to be at Wal-Mart.

As soon as you grasp
for that growth,

you're gonna view
your customer differently,

you're gonna view
your product differently,

you're gonna view
your business differently.

You're gonna view everything that is
the most important--

you're gonna view
that differently.


(people chatting)

This is our new
organic line of popcorn.

This is Vitasoy soy milk,

the best soy milk
in the entire world.

This entire show
when it first started

was the size
of this column right here.


Several of us were sleeping
in our booths.

We couldn't afford
hotel rooms.

Organic's been growing
over 20% annually.

It's one of the fastest-growing segments
in the food industry.

My God! Ah!

We're not gonna
get rid of capitalism.

Certainly we're not
gonna get rid of it

in the time that we need
to arrest global warming

and reverse
the toxification

of our air,
our food and our water.

We need to be
much more urgent.

If we attempt to make perfect
the enemy of the good

and say we're only
going to buy food

from the most-perfect system

within 100 miles of us,
we're never gonna get there.

As an environmentalist,
it was pretty clear to me

that business was the source of all
the pollution,

business was the source of basically
all the things

that were
destroying this world.

In college I came across
this little institute

called New Alchemy

which was a group
of renegade biologists.

My hope is
to give you--

Hirshberg: We were preaching a kind
of a new religion,

trying to develop food
and waste-treatment alternatives,

but we were preaching
to the convinced.

We were depending on sources of support
that were dried up

and we weren't
reaching the audience

that really needed
these messages.

I realized we need
to not be David

up against Goliath.
We need to be Goliath.


Hirshberg: When we started out,
we were a seven-cow farm.

We wanted to prove that business
could be part of the solution

to the globe's
environmental problems.

At the same time
we had to prove

that we could be
highly profitable.

Today in 2008,
not only are

we the #3 yogurt brand
in America,

but we're among
the most profitable.

See, this is
the interesting thing.

A little company
like this is now Kraft,

but you don't have
any idea that it's Kraft.

This is now Pepsi.
That's now Kellogg's.

- Man: Kashi is Kellogg's?
- Yeah.

- This is Colgate now.
- Oh, is it?

Yeah, this is one of those companies
that started like us.

- Well, it's--
- Make them different?

Make them successful,

The jury is out.
I have to put it that way.

Hirshberg: These large companies
don't grow organically.

They grow by acquisition.

Coke, Pepsi, Kellogg's,
General Mills--

all of them are running,

not walking, into the organic
food business.

Hirshberg: For me, when a Wal-Mart
enters the organic space,

I'm thrilled. It's absolutely one of
the most exciting things.

I have dreamed
of the day

when I could sit
with corporate titans

and have conversations

about organics
and sustainability.

- This is Amanda. This is Rand.
- Hi Amanda. I'm Rand.

- Rand, nice to meet you.
- Tony.

- Tony. Great.
- Nice to meet you.

Okay, help me
figure out where--

- We both work for Wal-Mart.
- You're with Wal-Mart.


Do you know that we don't go
to Wal-Mart?

- We've never been.
- Rand: Oh yeah.

- Isn't that amazing?
- So we had to come to you.

Yeah, we've never been.

We just started boycotting
a long time ago

and we just kept
riding on that.

Wal-Mart is terribly sensitive

to their reputation.

They've obviously
been vilified,

probably more
than any retailer

in our current economy.

Actually, it's a pretty
easy decision

to try to support things like organic,
or whatever it might be,

based on what
the customer wants.

We see that
and react to it.

So if it's clear
the customer wants it,

it's really easy
to get behind it,

to push forward and try to make
that happen.

Hirshberg: When I run into
my old environmental friends,

many are
initially horrified

by the kinds of company
that I'm keeping these days.

But when I then
go on to explain

what the impact of one purchase order
from Wal-Mart is,

in terms of not pounds
but tons of pesticide,

tons of herbicide,
tons of chemical fertilizer,

the discussion--
we get away from the emotion

and we get down
to the facts.

This is really key, though,
what you guys are doing here.

I have no illusions
about this.

I don't believe that
Wal-Mart has come here

because they've suddenly had
a moral enlightenment.

It's because
of economics.

I can debate with my radical friends
all day long,

but nobody can
challenge the fact

that a sale of another
million dollars to Wal-Mart

helps to save
the world.

Pollan: Back around the turn
of the last century,

the average farmer could
feed six or eight people.

Now the average
American farmer

can feed
126 people, okay?

These are the most productive humans
that have ever lived.

The changes down
on the farm have been

momentous and radical but invisible
to most of us,

'cause who knows
a farmer anymore?

But their way of life

has been revolutionized.

10,000 years ago,

farmers started saving
their best seeds

and planted again
in the following year.

That's how seeds
have been developed.

That's how corn
was developed

from a useless grass
for the most part

to the extremely
productive plant it is today.

Pollan: The idea that any corporation
could own a food crop

is a very new idea.
It wasn't until the 1980s

that the Supreme Court said
you could patent life.

And that opened
the floodgates--

efforts to patent the most valuable
parts of life,

which is to say the crops
on which we depend.

Monsanto is a chemical company.

They produced DDT,
Agent Orange in Vietnam,

and then they developed
a product called "Roundup."

We started hearing rumblings
about genetically-engineered soybeans

that could resist
the application of Roundup.

When the Roundup was
sprayed over top of it,

it killed
every weed out there

except for this
Roundup Ready soybean.

Roush: I can remember
when the first prohibition

against seed saving
came into being.

Most farmers were just

absolutely disgusted
with the whole concept.

It's been interesting
over the course

of 11 years
to watch us go

from utter contempt
for the notion

that we can't save
our own seed

to acceptance.

What happens if a farmer

saves the seeds?


Well, you know,
really there's

only one company involved
in this now

and that's Monsanto.

Monsanto is...

They've got a team
of private investigators

that kind of roam
the country

and they've got
a little 1-800 hotline

they take calls on.
If they get a call

and somebody alleges
that somebody saved seed,

they'll send an investigator out
to look into the matter.

If you save your own seed,
you're gonna get a call

from somebody
from Monsanto.

David Runyon:
Two men drove in my driveway

at 7:00,
7:30 at night,

a black card to me

and they never told me
that they were from Monsanto.

Man: They said that they had
had a surveillance team,

caught me
cleaning beans.

Moe Parr:
I found it necessary to get up

at 3:00 and 4:in the morning

before the investigators are
on the road following me.

They were--

I'm gonna say maybe ex-military
or ex-police.

They were large
and they were intimidating.

Man: I don't know whether they had
their surveillance team

or whether it was my neighbor that
turned me in. I don't know.

Now as I turned to walk in the house,
one of them said--

I could hear in the back--
"He's guilty."

Runyon: It's a real ingenious device
designed back in the 1800s,

and Monsanto's gonna
close all of them out.

So how many seed cleaners
are out there

in the country
do you think?

In the state of Indiana,
there may be six.

I'm not aware of--

- How many there used to be?
- Oh my golly. Every county had three.

Have they all been
put out of business?

There's nobody left.

Runyon: When Monsanto soybeans
first came on the market,

I just never
really switched over.

I was getting
pretty good yield

with the conventional
soybeans I'd been using,

so I thought "Well,
I'll just stay where I'm at."

My neighbors
all around me are all GMOs.

If the pollen goes in,
if the seed moves in,

I am still held

Pollan: When you genetically
modify a crop, you own it.

We've never had this
in agriculture.

Roush: Used to be that your
land-grant universities,

they developed what
was called public seed.

The vast majority
of the plant breeding

was actually done
in these public institutions

Monsanto is very much like Microsoft.

The same way Microsoft owns
the intellectual property

behind most computers
in America,

they set out to own
the intellectual property

behind most of the food
in America.

Roush: Public plant breeding is
a thing of the past.

There virtually are
no public seeds anymore.

There's only like four or five varieties

that I can actually plant.

Now I have some
of the last soybeans

coming out
of the state of Illinois--

- That are not GMO.
- Public variety. Public variety.

When it comes to the point that I can't
buy any more certified seed,

what do I do?
What are my options?

I acquired this list
that was mailed to me.

The black list here is Monsanto's
unauthorized growers list.


Either farmers that have
judgments against them,

or businesses,
or else it's--

or it's farmers that have not submitted
their paperwork,

will not turn over
their records.

For my case,
that's why I'm on there--

'cause I would not
turn over my records.

- Am I on this list?
- Yes, you are.


I see two of the farmers
that I work for on here.

This list-- now it comes down
to the point

where I cannot buy
Monsanto products, okay?


So it's coming down to
"What can I plant?"

Parr: Monsanto is suing me
on the basis

that I'm encouraging the farmer
to break the patent law

by cleaning
their own seed.

I haven't been
in a courtroom yet

and my bill is
already $25,000.

People that were
friends of mine

now are reticent
to even talk with me.

We've been friends
for 50 years,

and now we can hardly be
seen together.


I don't think
I'm really guilty,

but it was cheaper
to pay the fine

than it was
to try to fight it.

- It gnaws at you...
- Parr: Sure.

...because if you think
you're right at something,

but yet you admit
you're wrong.

Roush: Monsanto falsely accused us
of violating their patent

and breach of contract.

None of it was true.

You go into a market,
you find a dominant farmer

and if you can ruin them, you scare
the rest of them to following the line.

My family spent $400,
fighting the battle, pretrial.

And we were told
it would take another million

to take the thing to trial.

We settled out of court.

The way the system appeared
to work to me was

Lady Justice had
the scales

and you piled cash
on the scales

and the one that piled
the most cash on the scales,

hired the most experts
and was most willing

to tell the biggest lies,
that was the winner.

That seems to be how our justice system
functions now.

It's terrible.
It's terrible.

How can a farmer
defend himself against

a multinational corporation
like Monsanto?

I talked to a young man
just three days ago.

They'd been
to his farm, you know?

And this poor kid,
he's just starting out.

His fiancée was there.
I talked to her

and tried to give them
the best advice I could.

Unfortunately the best advice
I could give them was

"Try to get out of this thing
with your skin intact.

Don't fight 'em.
You've got to roll over

and give them what they want,
'cause you can't defend yourself."

In the case of Monsanto,
their control is so dominant.

If you want to be
in production agriculture,

you're gonna be
in bed with Monsanto.

They own the soybean.

They are going to
control that product

from seed
to the supermarket.

They are, in effect,
gaining control of food.

Pollan: There has been
this revolving door

between Monsanto's
corporate offices

and the various regulatory

and judicial bodies that
have made the key decisions.

Roush: Justice Clarence Thomas
was a Monsanto attorney.

That wouldn't be
such a big deal

if it weren't
for one court case

that really decided
this whole seed-saving issue.

Justice Clarence Thomas
wrote the majority opinion

in a case that allowed
these companies

to prevent farmers
from saving their own seed.

Monsanto had very close ties

to the Bush administration...

and the Clinton administration.

This goes to why we haven't had
much political debate

over this radical change
to our food system.

Pollan: For the last 25 years,
our government

has been dominated
by the industries

that it was meant
to be regulating.

Schlosser: The challenge is as soon
as you have people

with expertise in industry, they may
turn out to be very good regulators.

It's really about what interests
they decide to represent.

You're talking about power--

centralized power

and that power
is being used

against the people who are
really producing the food

like the farmers.

It's being used
against the workers

who work
for these companies

and it's being used
against consumers

who are deliberately
being kept in the dark

about what they're eating,
where it comes from

and what it's doing
to their bodies.

(kids laughing)

Woman: Good afternoon,
Madame Chair and members.

SB-63 is a consumer
right-to-know measure.

It simply requires that
all foods that are cloned

must be labeled
as cloned foods.

These cloned animals are

a fundamentally
new thing.

But I find it incredible
that the FDA

not only wants to allow the sale of meat
from cloned animals

without further research,

but also wants to allow
the sale of this meat

without any labeling.

How many witnesses
in opposition, please?

Noelle Cremers
with California Farm Bureau.

And if I can point out--

the reason that we are
concerned with labeling

is it creates unnecessary fear
in a consumer's mind.

Until the industry
has an opportunity

to educate why we want
to use this technology

and the value
of the technology,

we don't feel that
consumers just having

a warning label
will help them.


Pollan: These companies fight
tooth and nail

against labeling.

The fast food industry
fought against

giving you
the calorie information.

They fought against
telling you

if there's trans fat
in their food.

The meat packing industry
for years prevented

country-of-origin labeling.

They fought not to label
genetically modified foods,

and now 78% of the processed food
in the supermarket

has some genetically-
modified ingredient.

I think it's one
of the most important battles

for consumers to fight--

is the right to know what's
in their food and how it was grown.

Not only
do they not want

you to know
what's in it,

they have managed
to make it against the law

to criticize
their products.

Man: Can you tell me how
you've changed how you eat?

Yeah, we--

you'll probably have to
talk to an attorney

before you would
put this in there.

What? You can say this is--
we've stopped--

I know, but--

I could have the meat
and poultry industry

coming after me
and I really--

Seriously? For saying--
that it's so--

It depends
on the context.

You're not saying
"Someone else don't eat it."

Yeah, I'm sorry,

but I get asked this
all the time.

my reaction was

"I don't care.
Let them sue me.

Let them try
and sue the mother

of a dead child
and see."

It's pretty amazing
that you can't say

- how you and your family have changed--
- The veggie libel laws...


are different.

The food industry has
different protections

than other industries do.

We have a lot of questions
about this mad cow disease.

Kowalcyk: If you recall the case
where Oprah was sued

by the meat industry

for something
she said on her show.

It has just
stopped me cold

from eating
another burger.

- Man: Good morning, Oprah.
- Good morning, y'all.

Man #2: Are you glad to see
it's finally winding down?

Well, I think
I can say that, right?

I can say that, yeah.
I can see the end in sight.

In Colorado it's a felony

if you're convicted
under a veggie libel law.

So you could
go to prison

for criticizing
the ground beef

that's being produced
in the state of Colorado.

There is an effort
in several farm states

to make it illegal
to publish

a photo of any
industrial food operation,

any feedlot operation.

At the same time, they've also gotten

bills passed that are
called cheeseburger bills

that make it very
very difficult

for you to sue them.

These companies have
legions of attorneys

and they may sue even though they know
they can't win

just to send a message.

Man: We are on record
for the deposition of Maurice Parr

in the matter
of Monsanto Company

and Monsanto Technology
versus Maurice Parr.

Man #2: Mr. Parr, we subpoenaed
your bank records

in this case.
Do you know that?

Parr: I'll tell you, what really
scared me the most today

was the fact that they have every check
that I have written

from every bank account
that I've used

in the last 10 years.

Man #2: Do you own any land,
Mr. Parr?

- Yes.
- Man #2: How many acres do you own?


Man #2: How long have you had
this Dell computer?

Which ones are soybean seed
cleaning customers?

- Mr. Kaufman?
- Beans only.

These people are not just customers,

they're personal friends.

It's extremely
heart-wrenching for me

to know that this list is
in the possession of Monsanto.

Harold Sinn?

Beans only.

Stephen Pennell:
This is the first case

in which
a seed company is suing

the person who does
the cleaning of the seed.

So if Monsanto's claims
are upheld in this case,

that would not only put
Moe out of business,

but it would prohibit
every grower in the country

from doing what
Moe does as a precedent in future cases.

Man #2:
Have any of these customers specifically

told you that
they are not going to use

- your seed-cleaning services anymore?
- Ron Merrill.

Parr's voice: This essentially puts me
out of business.

- Max Lowe.
- Parr's voice: I'm finished.

Jerry Kaufman.
Bill Zeering.

Robert Duvall.

Pollan: We've had a food system
that's been dedicated

to the single virtue
of efficiency,

so we grow a very small
number of crops,

a very small number
of varieties,

a very small
number of companies.

And even though
you achieve efficiencies,

the system gets
more and more precarious.

You will have
a breakdown eventually.

And where the breakdown
comes in the system

we don't always know.

Roush: Modern production agriculture
is highly dependent

on large amounts
of petroleum.

Our farm,
we're going to use

about 40,000 gallons
of diesel fuel a year.

We eat a lot of oil without knowing it.

To bring
a steer to slaughter,

it's 75 gallons of oil.

So what we're seeing is

that this
highly-efficient machine

does not have the resilience
to deal with shocks

such as the spike
in oil prices.

Food prices
last month were 3.9% higher

than they were
a year ago.

Take corn, another basic
source of food,

up to a 12-year high.

For a while, we could sell grains

so cheaply
anywhere in the world,

farmers in other countries
who aren't being subsidized

could not
compete with us.

So their capacity
to grow food

for themselves
was compromised.

The world's running out of food

and nobody's talking about it.
We have no reserves.

Man: There have been protests
around the world.

The food crisis has already
brought down one government.

A month doesn't go by

where there isn't
a story in the news

that peels back
the curtain

on how that
industrial food is made.

(mooing pitifully)

Downer cows-- too ill or lame to walk--

being brutalized to get them
to their feet for slaughter.

Woman: Millions of gallons
of concentrated hog manure

flushing their contents downriver.

Woman #2:
Government's food czar reported

that there are no tools
in place to track

the origin of the latest
salmonella outbreak.

Pollan: Every time one of these
stories comes out,

America learns
a little bit more--

what's going on in the kitchen
where their food is being prepared.

And every time
they turn away in revulsion

and start looking
for alternatives.

Hirshberg: The irony is that
the average consumer

does not feel
very powerful.

They think
they are the recipients

of whatever industry
has put out there

for them to consume.

Trust me,
it's the exact opposite.

When we run an item past
the supermarket scanner,

we're voting for local
or not, organic or not.

At Wal-Mart, we made
a decision about a year ago

to go through a process of becoming
rBST-free in our milk supply.

We made that decision based
on customer preference.

Individual consumers

changed the biggest
company on earth

and in so doing,

probably put the last nail
in the coffin

for synthetic
growth hormone.

Pollan: To eat well
in this country costs more

than to eat badly.
It will take more money

and some people simply
don't have it.

And that's one
of the reasons

that we need changes
at the policy level,

so that the carrots are
a better deal than the chips.

Schlosser: People think
"These companies are so big

and so powerful, how are we ever going
to change things?"

But look at
the tobacco industry.

It had huge control
over public policy

and that control
was broken.

The battle against tobacco
is a perfect model

of how an industry's
irresponsible behavior

can be changed.

(people talking)

Salatin: Imagine what it would be if,
as a national policy,

we said we would be
only successful

if we had
fewer people going

to the hospital
next year than last year.

How about that
for success?

The idea then
would be to have

such nutritionally dense

unadulterated food

that people who ate it
actually felt better,

had more energy,

and weren't sick as much.

Now see,
that's a noble goal.

Kowalcyk: I can't change the fact
that Kevin's dead.

When you tell somebody
you've lost a child,

I really don't like
that look of pity

that comes
into their eyes,

that they feel
sorry for me.

I can have a pity party
all by myself very well,

thank you.
I don't need it from other people.

What I need
them to do is listen

and help me
effect a change.

Roush: You have to understand
that we farmers,

we're gonna deliver to the marketplace
what the marketplace demands.

If you want
to buy $2 milk,

you're gonna get a feedlot
in the backyard. It's that simple.

People have got
to start demanding

good, wholesome
food of us.

And we'll deliver.
I promise you.

We're very ingenious people.
We'll deliver.

That's all
I had to say.

("This Land is Your Land"

(audience cheering)

 When I rode that ribbon highway 

 I saw above me 

 The endless skyway 

 I saw below me 

 The golden valley 

 Well, this land was made
for you and me 

 I roamed and rambled 

 I followed my footsteps 

the sparkling sands of 

 Her diamond deserts 

 And all around me 

 A voice was calling 

 It said "This land was
made for you and me" 

 This land is your land 

 This land is my land 

 From California 

 To the New York island 

 From the redwood forests 

 To the Gulf Stream waters 

 Well, this land was made
for you and me 

 Now the sun came shining 

 And I was strolling 

 Through wheat fields waving 

 And dust clouds rolling 

 And a voice was sounding 

 As the fog was lifting 

 It said "This land was
made for you and me" 

 This land is your land 

 This land is my land 

 From California 

 To the New York islands 

 From the redwood forest 

 To the Gulf Stream waters 

 Oh, this land was
made for you and me. 

(harmonica playing)

(classical score playing)

Special thanks to SergeiK.