You are what you eat. Which for some of us, means we are lasso-toting, cowboy-hat-wearing cream-filled golden sponge cakes. Yee-haw. For others, their body is a temple — everything that goes in must be pure organic brain or muscle fuel grown with the greatest of eco-responsibility in mind. For most, we’re somewhere in between. We’d like our vegetables fresh, our meat raised responsibly, and to have confidence in every one of those claims, yet at the same time, the occasional Twinkie or Ho-Ho won’t kill us. Even as bad as pastries might be for our health, we’d still prefer to be able to confidently rely on the expiration date stamped on the packaging.
But what are you if you can’t trust what you eat?
This is where we find ourselves today. One of the COVID-19 pandemic’s great lessons is that consumer demand can shift significantly in short order. And despite extraordinary obstacles, expectations remain the same. In the face of fluctuating resources, manpower, and provenance, what are food supply chains to do?
Thankfully, we saw this coming. Few saw the pandemic itself looming as a real threat, but as far as the paradigm shift toward ecommerce that demands greater transparency and flexibility, we were already moving in that direction. The most devastating public health crisis in a century simply hastened the shift. Knowing that food and agribusiness is a $5 trillion industry that represents 10 percent of global consumer spend, 40 percent of employment, and 30 percent of greenhouse-gas emissions leaves us acutely aware of the monumental stakes.
Read full post here →