Changing the rules on food packaging

Time for truthful labelling of all food?

My friend, Joel Payne, posted this on Facebook earlier:

I was just making myself a sandwich and noticed that on the ham packet it said, proudly, ‘Outdoor Bred’. Seemed a bit odd that it should be necessary to proudly state that your pigs had lived outside.

Indeed, it made me wonder why good practice is plainly stated, but bad practice is left to implication by the absence of any such claims.

So how about we change all the rules on food packaging so that you don’t just champion good practice, but you have to state any practice?

Label some vegetables ‘organic’, but also label others ‘chemically treated’. Label some meat ‘outdoor bred’, and others ‘bred in cages’. Some ‘fair trade’, label other things ‘producer exploiting’.

That should do the trick.

I love this.

It’s one thing to label food’s that positively exhibit healthy behaviour towards the production of food, it is another to proactively identify those that are exploitative or engage in harmful practices.

It’s very easy to see ‘Organic’, notice the higher price, and move along to the next item that’s cheaper. Would we be so quick to do that if there was a big label saying that the vegetables we were about to put in our shopping basket had been chemically treated?

Of course price is still the ultimate deal breaker for many, but I still agree with the essence of Joel’s post and the idea that we should be fully aware about the circumstances in which the food we are buying is produced.

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