Michael Pollan on egg recall and the high costs of cheap food
Poor Michael Pollan. Every time there’s a mass food recall — which these days is pretty dang often, the latest being 380,000 pounds of Walmart deli meat — every journalist and producer in America fills up his in-box with requests to comment. But that’s because The Omnivore’s Dilemma author still does the best job of anyone around in distilling complicated food-system issues into digestible soundbites.
Here, CNN’s Sanjay Gupta — Pollan-interview lottery winner du jour — asks him whether it’s worth it to pay more for eggs. Since Pollan recently explained to the Wall Street Journal why $8 for a dozen eggs could be considered a bargain, the answer won’t surprise anyone: “It depends on what you’re buying,” he says, explaining he buys his at the farmers market from pasture-based producers using old-fashioned techniques. Old-fashioned, that is, in that they predate 1980s massive-scale battery-hen factories, which is also when salmonella really began to be a problem.
The money quote, in an eggshell: “We all like cheap food. But when we’re spending billions to deal with a salmonella outbreak, it isn’t really as cheap as it seems.”