Cost & Economics

"Sustainably raised food is too expensive."


What’s the true costs of the food we eat? Do we always face a tradeoff between affordable and healthy food?

You can’t eat money, right? And money doesn’t grow on trees…Yet, how can we make sure we all have not only enough to eat, but also have quality food we can raise our kids on without going broke? Industrial agriculture continues to peddle their products and we all pay the costs of it — from farmer, to foodworker, to the eater, to the cook, to society. This section explores some of the biggest myths about the cost and economics of food, exploring why we simply can’t afford to continue to eat the food industrial agriculture pushes and why it makes economic sense to eat sustainably.

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Take Action

06-03-13 FarmBill

For a Fairer Farm Bill

In case you haven’t heard, things are heating up on Capitol Hill around the Farm Bill, the federal policy that shapes food, farm, and nutrition policy. Now’s our time to flex our collective muscle and speak up for a fair farm bill. Will you join us?

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Food Heroes

FEEST Youth cooking up community

Food Hero: FEEST

FEEST is the Food Education Empowerment and Sustainability Team! Based in Seattle, FEEST creates on-the-spot youth-driven cooking – of ideas and ingredients! – in the kitchen. Decisions are made communally about what will be prepared to create the day’s menu and serve up a delicious, healthy meal followed by a family-style feast – all while learning more about food and its […]

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Q & A


What are some inspiring efforts around the country that are helping put healthy food in the hands of low-income families?


LaDonnaRedmond_photoDetroit Black Food Policy Council and Malik Yakini, raising community food systems from the bottom up. This effort does not take a silver bullet approach and takes the community side of food systems development.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist


What are some specific ways we can each make it more affordable to choose organic food for ourselves?


LaDonnaRedmond_photoThe system is too complex to suggest that consumer behavior will change the system. In fact, I don’t believe that it will. We need consumers remember that they are also citizens and adopt a mentality that helps them understand the connection between the grocery store aisle and polling booths.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist


What are some policies that we could support that would make healthy food more affordable for the typical American family?


LaDonnaRedmond_photoWe must go beyond the farm bill policy. We have to come to an understanding that the food system that we want has never existed – meaning, one that is free from exploitation of land, labor and natural resources. This means that we need a NEW set of policies that unites these principles.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist

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Reports and Resources



Blending history, reporting, and a deep understanding of American farming and food production, Foodopoly is the shocking and revealing account of the business behind the meat, vegetables, grains and milk that most Americans eat every day, including some of our favorite and most respected organic and health-conscious brands. Hauter also pulls the curtain back from the little-understood but vital realm of agricultural policy, showing how it has been hijacked by lobbyists, driving out independent farmers and food processors in favor of the likes of Cargill, Tyson, Kraft and ConAgra. Foodopoly demonstrates how the impacts ripple far and wide, from economic stagnation in rural communities at home to famines overseas. In the end, Hauter argues that solving this crisis will require a complete structural shift—a change that is about politics, not just personal choice.

Eating in 2030: Trends and Perspectives

Diet in 2030: trends and outlooks was based on analysis from post-industrial countries with a post-modern culture, which suffer from a pervasive and widespread state of anxiety and uncertainty, reflected in various ways including the dietary behaviors they adopt.

A Dime A Day

A Dime A Day: The Impact of the Miller/Harkin Minimum Wage Proposal on the Price of Food

Big Food companies and their lobbying groups have lied to us many times, including spreading the myth that if the minimum wage is raised, food will become so expensive that none of us will be able to afford to eat out – or eat at all – again. The proposed Fair Minimum Wage Act, introduced in 2012 […]

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From the Blog


Spinning Food: How Food Industry Front Groups and Covert Communications are Shaping the Story of Our Food

We’re thrilled to announce the release of a new report that Anna has been working on with Kari Hamerschlag at Friends of the Earth U.S. and Stacy Malkan at U.S. Right to Know Network. “Spinning Food,” investigates how Big Food and agrochemical corporations are deliberately misleading the public – and reporters – on facts about industrial agriculture and organic and sustainable food production.

Walmart Report Cover

New Report Debunks Walmart’s Claims of Sustainability and Fairness in Food Supply Chain

On June 4, the day before Walmart’s annual shareholder meeting, the Food Chain Workers Alliance (FCWA) released a new report that exposes major discord between Walmart’s labor and environmental claims and the reality in its food supply chain and provides recommendations for improvements.

rapid response

Stop the TPP Fast Track

If you flex your civic muscle one time this month – or even all year – now is the moment! Join us in calling on your representatives to send a loud and clear message to say no to a Fast Track for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).