Chicken

I did not really know what to expect with this book by Steve Striffler, aside from that it would obviously deal with Chicken. This book focused on the industrialization and transformation of chicken and chicken products in the United States. I have always thought about the industrialization of food and fast food like McDonalds always comes to mind and I think of the thin, questionable (yet always satisfying and for some reason appealing) hamburger meat with the unnaturally shiny (again for whatever reason appealing) slice of bright yellow cheese. Reading this book I thought more about the industrialization of food and the chicken products of fast food restaurants which I am not sure why I do not associate more with the topic. I am not sure why this is not my immediate thought when thinking about the modification of food with fast foods but when mentioning how McDonalds “switched” to real white meat chicken leading to the question of what was in it before made me think back to the film SuperSize Me. We have discussed this film and how it was the first exposition of industrialized modified food for a lot of us, for me in 8th grade. I began to look further into this topic, when planning to help with class discussion and I found the sequel focused a bit more on chicken in fast food chains which led my to this clip, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EoX1qMzccMI I found it to be interesting and extremely relevant and it was on my mind for the rest of the time I read the book. Although after reading I began to think more about the content broadly and how the modification of chicken is not at all exclusive to fast food restaurants. Looking at brands like Tysons and Perdue and the exposing of the ways in which they produce their chicken and chicken products. I began to think more about my opinion and perception of chicken. The book continues to reiterate this point throughout that the rise of chicken came because it was the healthier choice to red meat but since the industrialization of chicken this has become less objective. I think that we still often fall into this narrative, chicken is seen as the healthier choice across many restaurants and American homes. Often people state that cutting out red meat helps with your health but then point consumers to chicken instead which after reading this I begin to question how valid that is. There are clearly positives and negatives to all meat options but this book may force people to think twice before falling back on chicken as the healthy choice.

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