America’s Food Production Industry Essay

726 words - 3 pages

The documentary Food Inc. exposes the inner workings of America’s food production industry, providing an unsettling bird’s eye view its abuse of American famers and its McDonaldized manner of producing our nation’s food supply. The documentary also reveals the mechanized manner in which food is made, doing away with major food production companies’ slogans and advertisements that falsely lead consumers to believe that real farmers, using only natural resources, grow their products. Furthermore, these food production empires have played a major role in McDonaldizing the food industry through religiously abiding by the four dimension of McDonaldization: efficiency, predictability, calculability and control. Throughout their existence they have successfully made their products readily available in every store nationwide, produced a large quantities in record time and homogenized the work their factory workers and even farmers.
When it comes to efficiency, emphasis is basically placed on the speed at which goods and services are produced and received. The way in which these major companies provide their respective efficiency can be explained simply by the availability of these companies’ products. For instances, we never hear of a shortage in Tyson brand meat in local supermarkets, they are readily available in surplus to millions of consumers. In fact their efficiency is so efficient that it becomes an irrationality, this is because their “just in case” overstocking causes a major surplus of their product, forcing the supermarkets to sell the excess meat supply that are near expiration at a lower price costing both Tyson and the store money.
The predictability of a McDonaldized model is important because it provides both comfort and security through the reassurance it bestows upon consumers and employees. Companies like Tyson, Swift (LBS), Cargill, Monsanto and National Beef provide consumers with comfort, in that there products are nearly always available (due to mass production and American “just in case” philosophy) and that there prices will be cheaper than their competitors, who ironically grow and manufacture their products in a humane (less efficient according to the McDonaldized model) manner. As for factory-level employees they find comfort in the standard...

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