Author: Eric Schlosser
|Fast Food Nation (2001) Summary explains some very dark facts about the fast-food industry everyone needs to know that the author Eric Schlosser has revealed. The book tells the readers how fast food is affecting our health and is responsible for the increase in poverty and crime rates. The book mainly focuses on how the Fast-Food Industry in America changed its Economic System.|
The book Fast Food Nation is written by Eric Schlosser who has highlighted the facts about the fast-food industry. From the emergence of fast-food companies after World War to how they are affecting public health, the author has described everything in his book.
The book tells us some really interesting facts about fast-food companies. Even though the book was written 15 years ago but we can still relate to it because nothing has changed till now. The author has also described what’s happening in farming and especially the situation of the meat production and processing industry throughout America.
Fast Food Nation Summary Key Points
Fast Food Industry marketing targets kids
Have you ever noticed why all Fast-food chains have colorful franchises, have special kids meals with toys, and have a play area?
If not then let me break it to you that all for the kids. Yes, the kids who are easy to attract. Or if we use the word manipulate that would be better. They irritate their parents until they give in and purchase it for them. There’s little that can persuade a parent more than a child’s plea. They aggressively market to children, through television advertisements featuring bright and colorful mascots, on-site playgrounds, and cross-promotional campaigns with toy companies and film studios.
This has proved to be a very effective marketing tactic of the Fast-Food industry to attract children since 1997 when McDonald’s added Teenie Beanie Baby with the happy meal and it gave a mind-blowing response. Within 10 days of the promotion, they 100 million Happy Meals which is a huge number!!
McDonald’s marketing to youngsters has resulted in 90 percent of all children in the United States between the ages of three and nine visiting the restaurant at least once a month. But advertising has had a negative impact on children’s health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one-quarter of children in the United States are overweight or obese, a figure that has doubled since the 1970s.
Working in the meat processing industry has become dangerous
Next up in the Fast-Food Nation summary, we get to know the situation of meat processing firms. Moreover, Meatpacking operations (where animals are slaughtered and dismembered) have long been hazardous places to work. However, in the 1940s and 1950s, unions raised salaries, allowing workers to earn more than the typical middle-class pay.
Many slaughterhouses now rely on migrant labor. Immigrants who are poor and illiterate are willing to labor for less money and detest unions. Two out of every three employees at the Greeley factory are unable to communicate in English. In their Mexico City headquarters, Iowa Beef Packers regularly recruits employees. They also run buses from Mexico to their operations in the United States. However, they claim that they exclusively hire persons who are legally allowed to work in the United States.
Every year, at least 33% of meatpacking employees are injured on the job. Slaughterhouse injuries can be particularly gruesome. Cuts are the most prevalent type. Workers are frequently forced to work side by side, chopping meat with huge, sharp knives. In fact, modern fast-food executives try to “deskill” jobs as much as possible. Machines are designed with buzzers and timers to remove all human judgment from the work.
How Fast food is affecting our health
We are all aware of the fact that fast food helps in gaining weight. Obviously, unhealthy weight and obesity is the major issue that is faced all around the world. Moreover, Food poisoning outbreaks have become significantly more dangerous as a result of modern food manufacturing.
There are numerous forms of dangerous bacteria that can cause illness or, in the worst-case scenario, death in humans. The majority of them are caused by contact with feces. Contamination in cattle slaughterhouses frequently occurs after the hide is removed or the intestines are removed.
The hide of a cow frequently contains mud and excrement residue. Some of it may contaminate the meat once it is removed. (Most of the time, this is done by a machine.) Better hygienic conditions at feedlots and slaughterhouses could considerably alleviate this problem. Cows are now living in highly crowded and filthy feedlots, often standing in their own feces. Another issue is that they are given a lot of antibiotics, which encourages them to get sick.
When the intestines are sliced and taken out, the meat can become infected. Normally, this is done by hand. The contents of the cow’s stomach or colon can flow out onto the meat if a cutting error is made. Schlosser was warned by an IBP worker that 1 out of every 200 cattle he gutted would have some spillage. When the line speed is quicker, the likelihood of these errors increases dramatically. Worse, the cattle that follow may get infected as well.
Who would I recommend Fast Food Nation Summary to?
Fast Food Nation summary is highly recommended to teenagers who love junk and can’t survive without eating twice a week. Moreover, the parents who get melted when their child insists to get Mcdonald’s need to read this book that it’s all brands strategies to attract children.