The biggest takeover in American business that you've n ever heard of The American supermarket seems to represent the best in America: abundance, freedom, choice. But that turns out to be an illusion. The rotisserie chicken, the pepperoni, the cordon bleu, the frozen pot pie, and the bacon virtually all come from four companies. In "The Meat ...
The biggest takeover in American business that you've n ever heard of The American supermarket seems to represent the best in America: abundance, freedom, choice. But that turns out to be an illusion. The rotisserie chicken, the pepperoni, the cordon bleu, the frozen pot pie, and the bacon virtually all come from four companies. In "The Meat Racket," investigative reporter Christopher Leonard delivers the first-ever account of how a handful of companies have seized the nation's meat supply. He shows how they built a system that puts farmers on the edge of bankruptcy, charges high prices to consumers, and returns the industry to the shape it had in the 1900s before the meat monopolists were broken up. At the dawn of the twenty-first century, the greatest capitalist country in the world has an oligarchy controlling much of the food we eat and a high-tech sharecropping system to make that possible. Forty years ago, more than thirty-six companies produced half of all the chicken Americans ate. Now there are only three that make that amount, and they control every aspect of the process, from the egg to the chicken to the chicken nugget. These companies are even able to raise meat prices for consumers while pushing down the price they pay to farmers. And tragically, big business and politics have derailed efforts to change the system. We know that it takes big companies to bring meat to the American table. What "The Meat Racket" shows is that this industrial system is rigged against all of us. In that sense, Leonard has exposed our heartland's biggest scandal.
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Publishers Weekly, 2014-06-30 In this history of Tyson Foods, veteran agriculture journalist Leonard details the impact of the company's industrial model on family farmers, meat packers, and consumers. Pruden provides competent delivery as the narrative continually shifts from business biography to hard-hitting expose. He is especially effective inhabiting the blunt essence of the three generations of Tyson men who, while very different in temperament and talents, all brought a bottom-line perspective to every facet of how animals reach the family dinner table. The boardroom mastery of the late Don Tyson-who took his father's regional poultry operation and transformed it into a global powerhouse-especially shines through. Pruden, despite all of his acting skill, does not choose to tackle the full range of accents and dialects, particularly related to the racial and class transformations of chicken farming in Arkansas and surrounding states. He also handles some of the most emotionally charged content with understatement, though listeners already steeped in food-supply issues will feel sufficiently stirred by the content itself. A Simon & Schuster hardcover. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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