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Food, Inc.: Mendel to Monsanto--The Promises and Perils of the Biotech Harvest

4.08 of 5 stars 4.08  ·  rating details  ·  598 ratings  ·  18 reviews
For most people, the global war over genetically modified foods is a distant and confusing one. The battles are conducted in the mystifying language of genetics. A handful of corporate "life science" giants, such as Monsanto, are pitted against a worldwide network of anticorporate ecowarriors like Greenpeace. And yet the possible benefits of biotech agriculture to our food ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published February 8th 2005 by Simon & Schuster (first published June 10th 2003)
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The Book that I read for this assignment is called Food Inc. The author of this book is Peter Pringle.The book is about the food industry in the united states of america. Food inc is 243 pages. A Common name in my book is monsanto. They are a corporation who specializes in GMO's ( Genetically Modified Organisms.

In Chapter four, " A New Sort of Tomato" Peter talks about GMO Tomatoes. He speaks on how in the early days of bio- engenieering, the petunia flower and tobacco leaves were the only two
Jan 15, 2008 Nicko rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Omnivores
Comprehensively covers a complex subject in an understandable and engaging way.

This is a book to own. It will change your perspective on food: where you buy it, what you buy and why. Not necessarily an 'alarmist' type of book. Just one that opens your eyes to the history of industrialized food production and where it is headed. A sustainable food supply should be at least of some importance to most people.

Consider some points in the book:
- insecticide and herbicide companies have bought out th
I found the lack of organization in this book its greatest downfall. The book subtitle "Mendel to Monsanto -- The Promises and Perils of the Biotech Harvest" would make it seem that it traces a scientific history beginning with Mendel and ending with Monsanto, though there is somewhat of a coherent connection made in this book, the chronology is extremely skewed. Each chapter is a jumble of the same and the chapter titles are only vaguely related to the chapter content. To write a book this way ...more
Expanded on GMO crops - was a little out of date. Repeated things and expanded on things from the world according to Monsanto, however shed some light on a few new things I didn't know. The authors point of view was also rather interesting and refreshing.
This is a really excellent book. Before I bought it I remember reading an review that more or less said this book was a shill for corporate agribusiness, but I don't agree at all. Peter Pringle seems to have presented the pertinent issues, important events, and opinions around them in an informative, unbiased manner, which I really appreciate.
Alot of the events covered in this book were also covered in one of my favorite documentaries, The Future of Food, and it was interesting to se
Excellent. I don't understand why I thought it was dull and put is aside when I started reading it a few years ago. Pringle has this really interesting style of seeming to mock the argument, credentials, or public statements of a certain advocate or group, then delving into their point of view to the extent that it becomes either reasonable or deeply flawed - but you can't usually tell which it's going to be when you start reading about them. It's rather blatant skepticism, and once I got used t ...more
Jan 09, 2015 Amanda marked it as to-read
Shelves: health
I have watched the movie and it shifted my perspective on the food industry... hoping the book is even better!
Feb 03, 2013 Katie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: food
The author presents an "unbiased" discussion of genetically modified crops. He does a fairly good job. Sometimes his jumping back and forth across an issue is confusing, but he tries not to stay too long on any one side. Despite (or perhaps because of) his unbiased opinion there is much in here that should concern the public about the safety of GM crops, although the author still holds out hope that GM crops can help feed the world. This book isn't as extensive or well researched as "The World A ...more
This was an interesting book. I always just thought about the health ramifications of genetically modified food, but there are so many other issues. Like the way big corporations have exploited poor farmer's from underdeveloped countries and how GM foods affect the economy of third world countries. It was also really scary to learn how the government regulates this industry. The regulations are SO lax that it is really scary!!!!!
May 08, 2007 Ashley rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those who want to understand the GM debate and with interests in politics, science, and economics
Shelves: general
This gives a well-balanced account of the many arguments on both sides of the GM debate. Its a relatively quick read and provides important background information on the subject. What I like most is that after providing you with the "facts", as close as one can come, it leaves the reader to maker his/her own decision.
Have you eaten genetically modified food? If you're American, yes. Yet how much do we actually know about this new technology. This book is fair and unbiased. The author points out faults on both sides as to why there is so much FUD about them. I learned a lot about it's history and where we'll go from here.
The first chapter was slow and I didn't find it as compelling as the rest of the book. I think the author did a good job of providing a balanced view while highlighting the lax regulations and patent law oversights that are creating problems in the industry.
Mar 20, 2014 Lisa added it
I'm hoping that by watching the documentary I will be able to retain some of the facts a bit better.
Did not thoroughly read the last couple of chapters as it was just more of the same. I agree with the message, appreciated the background information and examples but didn't need quite so much of it.
This was one of the 2004 RUSA Notable Books winners. For the complete list, go to
i'd really love to take Monsanto down a notch or two, or ten.
Yes, watch the film, but definitely read the book.
Michael De Paola
Nov 04, 2009 Michael De Paola marked it as to-read
I'd have liked to see the documentary too but I don't think it played outside of New York or L.A.
A frightening look at the food industry. Now a independent film
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  • Seeds of Deception: Exposing Industry and Government Lies about the Safety of the Genetically Engineered Foods You're Eating
  • Stolen Harvest: The Hijacking of the Global Food Supply
  • The End of Food: How the Food Industry Is Destroying Our Food Supply--And What You Can Do about It
  • Safe Food: Bacteria, Biotechnology, and Bioterrorism
  • Fair Food: Growing a Healthy, Sustainable Food System for All
  • Food Fight: The Inside Story of the Food Industry, America's Obesity Crisis, and What We Can Do about It
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  • Compassionate Carnivore: Or, How to Keep Animals Happy, Save Old Macdonald's Farm, Reduce Your Hoofprint, and Still Eat Meat
  • Food Inc.: A Participant Guide: How Industrial Food is Making Us Sicker, Fatter, and Poorer-And What You Can Do About It
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  • The Revolution Will Not be Microwaved: Inside America's Underground Food Movements
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Peter Pringle is a veteran British foreign correspondent. He is theauthor and coauthor of several nonfiction books, including th ebestselling Those Are Real Bullets, Aren't They? He lives in New York City.

* Arthur Hemmings Mystery
More about Peter Pringle...
Those Are Real Bullets: Bloody Sunday, Derry, 1972 A Place at the Table: The Crisis of 49 Million Hungry Americans and How to Solve It Experiment Eleven: Dark Secrets Behind the Discovery of a Wonder Drug The Murder of Nikolai Vavilov: The Story of Stalin's Persecution of One of the Great Scientists of the Twentieth Century Day of the Dandelion (Arthur Hemmings Mystery #1)

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