For Foodness Sake

Clarice Oelofse
 November 11, 2014
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Food Safety

I googled “foodness” and it defaulted to "goodness". Uhm, ja, about that… The issue is: Can the food that you eat, really be classified as food, or be classified as real food? Foodpolitics.com identifies "foodness" as an “index of the extent of processing”. The argument is: some of the foods we eat are so over processed, it is barely recognisable as food in any near-natural form. This brings us back to the labelling debate as well as the controversy surrounding GMO’s etc… In a not so recent article, well known New York food writer Mark Bittman states what he thinks an ideal label would look like…

Quoting Bittman: “We need to consider the well-being of the earth (and all that that means, like climate, and soil, water and air quality), the people who grow and prepare our food, the animals we eat, the overall wholesomeness of the food -- what you might call its "foodness" (once the word "natural" might have served, but that's been completely co-opted), as opposed to its fakeness. ("Foodness" is a tricky, perhaps even silly word, but it expresses what it should...”

The issue of food processing is mainly ignored or minimised in education and information about food, nutrition or health and also in public health policies. Bittman worked with Werner Design Werks of St. Paul to devise a food label that tells the story of a packaged food in three key elements: Nutrition, Foodness, and Wellness. Each label would provide the food with an overall score between 1 and 15 and a color code. Green codes with an 11-15 point score can be eaten freely, while red codes with 0-5 points should be eaten rarely or never. Read the original article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/14/opinion/sunday/bittman-my-dream-food-label.html


Just for fun, have a look at this clip:


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