Acting on some old recommendations, I watched King Corn today.
I thought it would be good “background documentary” — something to have on in the background while I played on my laptop. From the moment it started, I barely touched the laptop.
The film follows two friends who move to Iowa to farm an acre of corn and see what happens to it. A huge amount, it turns out, ends up feeding the cattle that become our hamburgers, and another huge amount becomes the high-fructose corn syrup that sweetens virtually everything we eat. The moral: you’re eating corn with every meal whether you think you are or not.
The film also dissects how it’s government subsidies that create such a surplus of corn, making it cheap to use in so many different foods. My favorite line in the piece:
We subsidize the Happy Meals, but we don’t subsidize the healthy ones.
I’d already replaced all my frozen corn with frozen peas after friends recommended this movie. Now I’ll also be hunting down the excess high-fructose corn syrup in my kitchen.