Tien's Reviews > The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals

The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
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Nov 05, 2007

it was ok

This is a really good book that gets only two stars because it gets annoying. He starts by taking a fascinating look at corn and our very odd decision to be continually dependent on it. And then he walks through Whole Foods and dissects its philosophy and discovers that, surprise, the foods there aren't as organic and local as they advertise. (But he still shops there, of course. It's still Whole Foods.). And then it goes a bit downhill from there. Will a foodie please, please write about how to make local foods accessible to people who are not on a farm and not on the wealthier, gentrified sections of either coast? And not spend all of the last third of the book documenting your efforts on how to literally find a farmer who will get you a small pig to roast, just to prove that it is ultra satisfying to have enough money to eat locally? You want to change how we eat in this country, this is not the way to do it.
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04/03 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Subarashi (new)

Subarashi here here


Steve Duong I really resonated with your emotions about "local farming" I haven't read the book yet but I'm a young aspiring gardener and reading that section about gentrification in their inclined areas hits me pretty hard. I live in Washington and only people that live in Washington would understand that there is a major contrast between Upper Seattle and (I'm tempted to say the rest of Wa) 80% of the state in itself. It's very hard to find local farming albeit, and chances are especially if you are in a more-or-less neglected neighborhood or your just not in a local garden accessible area, you really don't have a choice but to buy "crap." Plus take into account the lack of financial means to eat such lavishly (which is a whole nother thing...) I'm not sure what the main objective of this book is it seems like the author really wants to "Change how we eat" which isn't a new philosophy. I have it reserved, thanks for the review, despite it's 2 star-rating I will still pick it up!


message 3: by Ani (new) - rated it 2 stars

Ani Well said! I am in Oregon, and it can be reasonably easy to eat locally and fairly cheaply (I am unemployed, hurrah!) but I have lived all over the U.S. and I've eaten a lot of McDonald's because it was the only thing for miles. Leaving Albuquerque, NM took my body months to recover and remove residual nastiness. Wouldn't a series of little handbooks/e-books about how to buy locally in each state or even just general area be great?


Elizabeth My thought exactly, This book took me almost a year to read because it just got more and more annoying as I kept reading.


Lorenzo Pilla I would begin by exploring your own area for small farms. When you see hand-made signs advertising eggs or tomatoes on the roadside, stop in and chat with those people - and buy their products. Go to farmers' markets, look online - type your town name and "organic" or "free rane" and see what you come up with. And finally, you can start your own garden, raise your own chickens and rabbits, etc. even in a very small space, even in the middle of a city. Check out cityfarmer.org or citygirlfarming.com or any one a thousand other resources.


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