Fun Sameness

"When you buy a box of Cheerios in New York and one in Champaign, Illinois, you know they are going to be the same. By shortening the genetic pool using clones, you can do a similar thing."

- JON FISHER, president and owner of Prairie State Semen in Illinois, after the F.D.A. declared cloned animals safe for the food
supply: NY Times.

Is it true that most (American) consumers prioritise predictability above all else?
Will we see same-tasting name-brand tomatoes and pork chitlins uniting the palates of the world like McFish burgers and Krispy Kreme?
Seems to me it's easier to make stuff taste the same by adding low-cost soy meal, corn products and artificial additives. Who cares what the cow tastes like in the first place?

As the NY Times reported (see below), of course those same-tasting Mac n Cheese boxes are not the be all and end all for lower income American consumers. Farmer's markets need not be the preserve of the middle classes. If only they weren't so damn expensive.

Vouchers that permit low-income women to shop at a local farmers’ market increase fruit and vegetable consumption in poor families, a new study shows.

The research, published this month in the American Journal of Public Health, comes just as states are making important changes to national nutrition programs. For years, the federally-funded Women, Infants and Children (W.I.C.) program, which subsidizes food purchases for low-income women and young children, hasn’t included fruits and vegetables, except for fruit juice and carrots for breastfeeding women. After a push by health groups and a recent report from the Institute of Medicine, the United States Department of Agriculture in December revised W.I.C. to include monthly subsidies for fruits and vegetables. States will begin implementing the new rules in February.

While this latest report shows that subsidizing fruit and vegetable purchases can make a big difference in eating habits among low-income people, it also suggests that the new amounts recently approved for W.I.C. fall far short of what is needed. The U.C.L.A. study gave women $10 a week, while the W.I.C. program will provide monthly vouchers worth $8 to each recipient and $6 to each child. Breastfeeding women will receive just $10 a month toward fruits and vegetables.


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