Is food anarchy the answer?

L.A. Times columnist calls for government to retreat from its attacks on our food choices.

I received an interesting email yesterday morning from Julie Gunlock, director of the Women for Food Freedom Project at the Independent Women’s Forum. She was promoting an opinion piece she had written for the Los Angeles Times. Although she asked for nothing, I suppose she was looking for a secondary outlet for her message.

The article was titled, “Keep the State off My Plate.” The writer is yet another activist weighing in on government involvement into what—and how much—Americans eat and drink.

Gunlock makes a few good points, but her overall message is one that I imagine wouldn’t sit well with most Americans if they really think about it. She’s basically advocating a kind of food anarchy.

“Americans must ask themselves: Do we really want government bureaucrats in charge of how much soda we can drink and what amount of salt can go into a can of soup?” Gunlock concludes in her article. “Is this really fitting for a country of free citizens with a limited government?”

I think the answer is, yes and no. I’ve argued previously that attempted government controls are often poorly conceived and ill-fated, such as New York Mayor Bloomberg’s ban on the sale of fountain sodas of more than 16 ounces.

But government does provide some protections for Americans, not only from themselves but from unscrupulous practices on the part of Big Business. Does Gunlock actually want food manufacturers to have the unchecked ability to put whatever they want into the food we eat? Laying aside questions about government excesses or questionable practices, without government agencies such as FDA and USDA who would have the power to protect the health and safety of citizens from unregulated food manufacturers?

More From FoodService Director

Sponsored Content
savory yogurt parfait

From Dannon Foodservice.

What consumers eat and, most importantly, when they’re eating it has changed significantly in recent years, signaling opportunity for operators able to capitalize on this evolution.

For example, some 83% of consumers said they were daily snackers in 2016, according to Technomic’s Snacking Occasion Consumer Trend Report . That’s up from 76% just two years earlier. Snacking is growing across many channels from retail prepared foods to bakery and coffee cafes, fast-food locations and more.

Busy lifestyles, smaller households with greater meal...

Industry News & Opinion

Labor secretary nominee Andy Puzder has officially bowed out of consideration for the cabinet position, according to the Associated Press .

Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants—the parent company of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr.—was tired of being under fire for hiring an undocumented immigrant as a nanny and being accused 26 years ago of physically abusing his wife, an unnamed source told CBS News . The agency reported that Puzder was unlikely to show for the start of his confirmation hearings tomorrow.

Puzder has also been attacked by organized labor for comments suggesting that...

Industry News & Opinion

Risley Dining Room at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., has just become 100 percent gluten-free, 14850.com reports.

For the past two years, the university has slowly phased out gluten in the dining hall’s menu by eliminating it in its stir fries, biscuits and brownies.

Instead of offering gluten-free versions of typical college fare, including pizza and pasta, the dining service team aimed for more sophisticated restaurant-style items.

Along with being gluten-free, Risley is also peanut free and tree-nut free.

The dining room is the second college eatery...

Industry News & Opinion

James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va., recently hosted a weeklong program called Weigh the Waste, which aimed to show students how much food gets wasted in dining halls, The Breeze reports.

Throughout the week, students placed food they were about to throw away on a scale located near the trash bins at one of their dining halls. At the end of the week, the school tallied the waste and saw that 817 pounds of food had been wasted.

School officials hope that the annual program, which it’s hosted since 2015, will remind dining hall patrons to only take as much food as...

FSD Resources