It’s no secret that I have a pretty big life goal … To restructure the United States’ food subsidy policies!
…but what does that mean and how will it help anything?
Every year the government spends billions of dollars to make certain foods cheaper, thus making those foods the most used foods in America (corn, wheat, soybeans, etc). Why not use those funds to make healthy foods cheaper? Why not make organic food cheaper to produce and distribute, for example? Why do people have to choose between eating healthy vs. saving money? Why are we wasting time and energy trying to educate 350 million people on how to NOT buy the bad food? Why are we wasting billions on the highest health care costs in the world, which is 100% caused by the foods we are eating? I want to remove the bad, unhealthy choices. Imagine this country with minimal obesity and heart disease and cancer and diabetes – imagine how many lives would be different today … Imagine how it would improve the quality of life for millions of people … I already have …
My father died at 63 years of age. What did he do wrong? Did he have a drinking problem? NO. Did he have a drug problem? NO. Did he have a high risk job? Did he break laws? Was he a bad person? NO. NO. NO.
He served in the Navy. He worked. He retired. And he ate the most readily available foods. The ones that were the most convenient and cheapest. He drank the things that were the most convenient and cheapest. And he became obese and sick, he took the drugs that the doctors told him to take. Then he died. He didn’t have to die. It makes me sad. And it makes me mad. Someone else’s father shouldn’t die if they eat and drink what’s cheapest and easiest to get their hands on either.
I believe that our government has the means to change that.
READ THIS: OUR CRAZY FARM SUBSIDIES
There are 3 parts to my oversimplified idea:
PART 1: CHANGE THE LAWS
⇒Lobby to ban many of the same ingredients that other foreign governments have banned
WHY?: We have so many chemicals in our foods to make it last longer, taste better, look better, improve some marketed nutrient … over the years those trace chemicals add up in your body to turn into fat, cause sickness, and addict you to foods.
READ THIS: 13 BANNED FOODS STILL ALLOWED IN AMERICA
⇒Transition food stamps and government food support to cover fresh produce and fresh meats only
WHY?: Who would you guess has the poorest health and the biggest health care needs in our country – the rich or the poor? Feeding low-income citizens and their children chemical-laden, processed, and low-quality food only leads to more health care costs, a less energetic population, and terrible lifestyle habits that carry on to the next generation.
READ THIS: SUBSIDIES HELP FOOD STAMP RECIPIENTS
⇒Subsidize Organic farmers, Organic transportation, Organic certifying
WHY?: What if an organic apple cost $.25 and a conventional apple cost $1.00 – which would you buy? It costs more money for a farmer to grow and ship their organic foods (special equipment, tests, and certifications are needed to ensure the integrity of the product). All that extra stuff costs more money and brings prices up. The laws can be changed to even the cost of production so that price is no longer a factor for the end consumer.
READ THIS: GRANTS FOR ORGANIC
⇒Subsidize introduction of Reset Challenges to grade schools
WHY?: How easy and fun would it be to have kids grades 5-8 do the 10 Day Water Challenge as a class? Or the 21 Salads Challenge? They could have fun tracking the results and share the Challenge with their parents! Add to that, they could personally experience how they feel and what they notice and become aware of this at a young age. What if you had tried these Reset Challenges at a younger age?
READ THIS: AMERICA LUNCHROOM
⇒Model the food policies of the highest ranked healthy countries
WHY?: Australia, Switzerland, and Sweden are among the top 10 healthiest countries on the planet! Where is the U.S.? #33 … after Kuwait. Maybe it’s time to put pride aside and learn something from countries that don’t have our levels of obesity, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc…
READ THIS: HEALTHIEST COUNTRIES
AND THIS: BEST AND WORST FOOD SYSTEMS
PART 2: ENCOURAGE THE GOOD GUYS & PAY OFF THE BAD GUYS
⇒Temporarily subsidize chemical and GMO-based food mega providers to change their business models
WHY?: One word … Monsanto. I can hear the boos and the hissing from here. One more word … McDonald’s. Now the crowd breaks into a frenzy. The bottom line – these are mega companies built to make a profit and sell BILLIONS of dollars of food to Americans. Why would you try to crush something like that when you can leverage its power and influence for a better good? BUT … we’d need to cover their bills for a while. Cover their loss of revenue (due to the new legislation) for a few years until they had reformulated to meet our new guidelines (Trust me – America has the money to cover them!)
READ THIS: AN ORGANIC MCDONALDS
⇒Incentivize food manufacturers that use less chemical additives
WHY?: If you sell a product that has very few or ZERO added chemicals (as determined by the new guidelines) then you get a tax break every year!
⇒Raise taxes on packaged and processed foods sold to restaurants
WHY?: Just like cigarettes. If you’re going to peddle low-quality food that is causing obesity and sickness, you or your customer will pay more for that choice.
READ THIS: DISEASE FUND RAISING ORGANIZATIONS
⇒Increase the tax on food & drink items with too many added sugars
WHY?: Same as above. Maybe we’ll give a break for Halloween 🙂
READ THIS: THE TWINKIE TAX
PART 3: BRING THE FOOD CLOSER
⇒Provide incentives & subsidize local small farmers
WHY?: One of the reasons that there are so many chemicals in our foods is to preserve the foods to allow them to be shipped cross country. All that shipping and storage demands modifying foods to keep them fresh and safe for consumers to buy them. So … let’s cut out all the shipping. The Goal – have the vast majority of foods grown and raised within 50 miles of the consumer. That means a) lots more farms, b) lots more farmers, and c) a huge need for farmland. Will it be more inefficient than growing everything in the same place and shipping it out … YUP. But, how has all that efficiency worked out for us over the past 100 years?
READ THIS: THE FARM BILL
⇒Increase taxes on shipping foods more than 50 miles
WHY?: If you’re going to ship food long distances and thus create a larger carbon footprint, you will pay for it.
⇒”WHERE DO WE GET THE MONEY FROM?”
And we are a charitable society … many will give to help. And trust me … it adds up!
READ THIS: DISEASE FUND RAISING ORGANIZATIONS
⇒”It’s too big of a change. It will never happen!”
I couldn’t disagree with you more. I believe that people can change the world. Look at the civil rights movement. That was a gargantuan effort. Look at how Facebook has changed how 1.2 BILLION people on planet Earth communicate.
– Our food policy has NOT been like this always. Only in the past 40-50 years has it been anything similar to what we know now.
– ALL of the food our great grandparents ate was organic and chemical free
– We have dozens of other successful countries to model our policy after
SCENARIO: The news announces a huge batch of tainted packaged food from a mega food producer that has been shipped to grocers around the country. There are 5 DEATHS reported in the past week alone … How quickly do you think that food would be tracked down, RECALLED and REPLACED? OVERNIGHT! Once we realize how urgent it is, we can take action QUICKLY … we just need to make this an urgent issue. Then, my friend, I assure you this will change … quickly.
1. Billions saved in heath care costs…EVERY YEAR!
2. More productive workforce (less sick time, more energy, happy worker are better workers)
3. Better quality of life
4. No need to continually educate people on “eating healthy”. People will continue to eat the lowest costing, most convenient foods around them
5. A race of superhuman beings that fly, glow in the dark, and walk on water! (maybe I’m exaggerating here)
Trust me, I know there are far more tradeoffs, side effects, push back, and subtle fall out than I’m covering here. But a group of people vehemently committed to a cause, can overcome challenges … right?
What are you thoughts on that plan?
WHAT YOU CAN DO … NOW
1. Share this article on your social media sites, to your friends, to your co-workers. Randomly, it will end up in the right hands…
2. Visit the Food Policy site http://www.foodpolicyaction.org/ (contact your legislators, etc)
3. Start a Reset Challenge at your workplace or school
Get off the fence and do something! We have enough people sitting around, nodding their heads, and agreeing.
I need some more soldiers. They may have given us rifles shooting blanks, but with the right army we can win this battle. Up close. We see the whites of their eyes. We feel the heat of their breath. Come with me…
With passion and numbers, a revolution can be born – ARE YOU READY?