I had a stomach flu yesterday and got through it by binging on the best series I've seen in a long while. Yes, it's a Netflix documentary series, and yes, it's about our global food supply—like spinach, one reviewer wrote. But oh my, I felt like Popeye afterward! It is so very engaging, relevant, and beautifully told.
I learned details about global trade, and the financial-ization of our food. Each of the five episodes had gripping stories at their heart: an horrendous chicken serial killer, bee thievery, a convicted restaurant no-nut murderer, tales of New England's Codfather, and international intrigues of organic garlic farmers and raw milk producers. These were not just painless, but illuminating, enlivened by real people who cared about things real people care about. You see in this series, close-to-home picture of dairy farmers, chick-growers, fishing folk, and hive-keepers, issues that you and your family and neighbors talk about: our bees disappearing, our new food allergies and fears, cheap chicken, expensive seafood, and garlic in everything gourmet.
China and trade policy figure largely in this, but all is enlivened by people on all sides you can care about. One of my mother's concerns, which I write about in Screwnomics is "the little guy," the real heroes and heroines in this film series. You see in this that regardless of national boundaries, we little guys have much more in common with each other, than with the looming and freakishly overlarge financial powers moving in on all of us, globalizing our food chains, cheapening our work and our health in ways we can collectively address—but only with knowledge. This series provides us with that. I highly recommend it.