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Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America
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Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  290 ratings  ·  42 reviews
Wenonah Hauter owns an organic family farm that provides healthy vegetables to hundreds of families as part of the growing nationwide Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) movement. Yet, as one of the nation's leading healthy–food advocates, Hauter believes that the local food movement is not enough to solve America's food crisis and the public health debacle it has ...more
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published December 11th 2012 by The New Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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Diane S ☔
Feb 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 5000-2019
3.5 Can one possibly be surprised to hear that above all money and power talks? It is apparent in almost every societal issue, that this is true. So that this is true, even in the control of the food we eat, the lack of policies that should proect us, was not a surprise, but some of this book was as we're the statistics. The loss of 1.4 million cattle, hog and dairy farms in the last thirty years, didn't realize this number was so huge. Also didn't know that hedge funds were grabbing lands. That ...more
I. Merey
Feb 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
-Corporations, which should be carefully restrained creatures of the law and the servants of the people, are fast becoming the people’s masters. –Pres. Grover Cleveland

Money really is the root of all evil.

Wenonah Hauter does a formidable job of addressing what exactly has screwed up the food industry in America today. You can call it lack of mass education; a deliberate misleading of the public, a slow change in consumer tastes (fashioned, not oddly, to run increasingly in tandem with the
Mar 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Agribusiness is destroying the land, feeding us unhealthy food, and price gouging with monopolistic power. This is only the beginning of the list of bad things that giant globally powerfully agribusiness corporations do to harm people and the planet.

Wenonah Hauter has done a tremendous job of detailing and explaining the decades-long takeover of our government by giant companies like Monsanto that seem to confuse poison with food and then pass laws to make it the only thing available to eat.

Mar 24, 2013 rated it liked it
I have a tough time with books that are strongly biased towards a specific point of view. I found the information in this book around our food policies and business environment really useful, but the specific food policies recommended are so extreme that I can't see them working at scale across the entire world. Mostly I found reading this book irritating whenever policy was discussed.
Jan 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
This is about the survival of our planet. An executive summary would be useful. Very well researched. Someone not wanting to read that many pages could read just the last part and assume that the evidence supporting it is found in the earlier parts. Everyone should learn this and act accordingly.
Brett Cottrell
Jan 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is not for everybody, only those who eat.

If you've seen Food Inc., Foodopoly is the next step. It's a must read for understanding the destructive hegemony of global agribusiness.
Dec 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'll repeat what I told my FB friends: "Everyone in America who eats good should read this." You may never want to again.
Robert Johnson
Feb 05, 2013 rated it really liked it

A very scary story of the state of our food supply. The almost corruption of the elected officials that are suppose to look after the American people but as always looking out for themselves and the big corporations . This book should be read by every one that eats. This book brings a lot of stats on how food is produced today and how it was produced before big corporations took over. This book brings to life how big corp. sets pricing, qulity and availability of food. Maybe if enough
Dee Halzack
Oct 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Excellent coverage of all that's wrong with our current food system, from abuses of labor and growers to the favoring of industrial farming over small farms to lack of appropriate regulation to inappropriate regulation to genetic engineering.

I highly recommend this to anyone concerned about the alarming changes to our food supply and the need to ensure that our supply is healthy and uncontaminated.
Jul 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a super informative read & I recommend for everyone who is interested in the food system and not to give it at least a skim! We all eat, and it is important to realize where all that food comes from. This book is packed full of hard facts that I believe are important for every consumer to consider while purchasing their next meal!
Jane Bulnes-Fowles
May 16, 2018 rated it liked it
There's a lot of great info, and I definitely learned more about our food system. But the book has a very clear agenda, and everything in it is constructed in support of this agenda. Think of this as an op-ed book, not a balanced view.
Jul 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Enlighteningly scary.
Dec 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Some of it's pretty familiar from books like Fast Food Nation and Eating Animals, but much of it's valuable in its own right.
Nicholas Miller
Jun 12, 2017 rated it did not like it
It's like reading a book of very biased opinions and statistics. It is not presented well or enjoyable to read.
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Informative page turner ! I love reading about our environment and politics very good read. I would recommend this to everyone.
Rivera Sun
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend Foodopoly to everyone who is passionate about American food, health, and life! This book is more than just 'food for thought'. It is grist for the mill of your mind and fuel for your courageous activism. Foodopoly will make your gut wrench and your heart stop. It ultimately leaves you with the call to action: "Eat AND Act your politics". As we know, the personal is political ... and nowhere is this more apparent than in the food we eat.

Wenonah Hauter's long history of food
May 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Wennoah Hauter is the Executive Director of Food & Water Watch; she is also an organic farmer.

Hauter also cares deeply about the future of our food, our agricultural land, and our future. In Foodopoly: The battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America she breaks down the complex nature of our food system and the issue of consolidated power. Food factory monopolies. Vertical integration of delivery systems from field to table, she offers a political history of how big business took
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was surprised by how much I learned reading this book (full disclosure: I work for Food & Water Watch and Wenonah Hauter is my ED). However, this book is flawlessly researched and many chapters are totally gripping. Not only is this book a wealth of information about the food system that I will turn to in both personal and professional lives, but it's actually an inspiring read. It easily could have been a depressing book that simply made people afraid to eat again, but that's not the ...more
Apr 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Wenonah Hauter has put together an amazing explanation of the American food industry - maybe one should say food industrial complex - but you cannot leave out the government - more anacronyms than FDR used in the new deal between the government agencies, the industry associations, the farm activists and coop associations and groups.

It shows how un in control we are of our food and how we are not even aware. It is scary to see how many insidious actions and hidden groups and agendas are working
Oct 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
OK, if you want to be shocked, read this book. Our food system is broken, Hauter says. The big business of agriculture have control from farm to shelf and exert a great deal of political power. You'll read about arsenic in food additives, the pressure to deregulate the meat industry, genetically engineered foods and much more. She gives many ideas of what can be done at the local level to provide the best food for your family. This is a disturbing book. it will make you think twice about how ...more
Carly Fabian
Jul 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’m so torn about this book. On the one hand, the information and analysis it contains is so important that it should probably be required reading for everyone in the United States. On the other hand, it is so poorly organized that I have trouble recommending it to anyone.

I think, ultimately, the content is so important right now that it’s worth reading for everyone, but it should probably be approached more akin to a textbook, something that is very important but requires attention and
Patrick Tsai
Jun 25, 2013 rated it liked it
This book sets out to explain an extremely complex and large topic. I think Ms. Haughter did a great job. However, due to the overlap in influence in many areas of the food system, chapters of the book feel repetitive. I feel as though the book could have accomplished the same end in 200 pages rather than 300. I love the charts and infographics. I feel the call to action by regular citizens was lost in the explanation of the seemingly larger system we have little say in.
Oct 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, politics, food
Not an easy read, but very informative. I felt, at turns, shocked, angry, puzzled, disillusioned, despairing, inspired.

In our broken food system, as in so many other arenas, monopolistic mega corps with massive political influence put short-term profit ahead of all other considerations, to the detriment of the commons.

It leaves me wondering if there is a healthy way to eat short of raising my own food.
Mar 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
A book of excellent, if scary, information. Unfortunately it left me feeling more hopeless than anything else. Very little information given on how to help fix the state of affairs as they have been laid out in the book. Everyone should read this just for the knowledge, but don't expect any paths to redemption.
Karen Duvall
Jan 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wonderfully, eye opening experience. I recommend you read this if you are still shopping at Wal-mart or any of the big box companies. This book explains why it is so important to make choices that steer us away from these food-monoploies and to look to our local communities instead.
Oct 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Ok so I am at the beginning of this one. BUT YOU WILL NEVER LOOK AT/THINK OF ORGANIC FOOD, WHOLE FOODS MARKET, ETC IN THE SAME LIGHT. For that matter, you may want to start growing all your own food or become really good friends with the local farmer in you neighborhood!!!! DREADFUL truths
Smai Fullerton
Nov 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, read-2013
A good primer to food politics, but lacking in some of the persuasive appeal as other works. I will re-visit the notion that apathy's sole beneficiary is the system that creates apathy in the first place, so gracias author for that philosophical addition to my life.
Jul 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Barbara by: AUS Book Club
Read...or as much of it as I'm going to read--about half, and lightly skimmed the rest. Basic problem is that I know this stuff and it is not written in a style that is anywhere near welcoming. A manifesto. One that I believe in, mind you. :-)
Loretta Feller
A shocking exposé of the history and development of the monopolistic food industry, and how its power and practices are destroying farmers and endangering our food supply. Look out for Monsanto. Save our plants!
Margaret Tyler
Mar 29, 2013 rated it it was ok
Great information, but too much information and it was not very readable. It was like trying to read a ridicously long Wikipedia article.
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I am author of Frackopoly: The Battle for the Future of Energy and the Environment which is due out on June 7, 2016 (, and Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America (

Executive Director of Food & Water Watch (, I've worked extensively on food, water, energy, and environmental issues
“A robust regional food system that benefits eaters and farmers cannot be achieved in a marketplace that is controlled, top to bottom, by a few firms and that rewards only scale, not innovation, quality, or sustainability.” 2 likes
“We cannot afford to be discouraged from challenging the corporate control of our food system, our genetic commons, our shared resources, or our democracy. The history of social change in our nation shows that the political system can be reformed, even if the road is long and zigzag.” 1 likes
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