In her review of the new film Food Inc. which debuted on the East and West Coasts last weekend, Kim Severson of the New York Times sounded a little weary of whistle-blowing food movies. I haven't seen Food Inc. yet (it opens in Houston on June 26) but evidently the movie delivers a whole lot of scary information about our food supply, especially if you eat meat.
And meat seems very popular lately. Food lovers are ordering organ meat at nose-to-tail restaurants like Feast, looking for short ribs and soup bones at the grocery store, and trying to cure their own bacon at home. In New York and San Francisco, urbanites are flocking to butchery classes. Are we, as a nation, disgusted by meat, fascinated by it, or some weird combination of the two? How else do you reconcile the revolting images of filthy cattle in feedlots shown in Food Inc. with the growing interest in home butchery?
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I e-mailed Severson and asked her what she made of it all. She replied, "I think the people who are going crazy over Food Inc. and the hipsters in Brooklyn who are opening butcher shops and all the people from the suburbs trying to make their own sausage are different parts of the same movement -- the movement toward having more control over what goes in your mouth."