Most of what you eat sat in a refrigerator
Birds Eye frozen food plant, Darien, WI. Photo: Center for Land Use Interpretation and Nicola Twilley. Creative Commons license.
Fascinating read by Alexis Madrigal at The Atlantic about an even more fascinating art exhibit. Photographer Nicola Twilley visited dozens of refrigerated warehouses that the food system relies on to keep products from spoiling before you buy them at the supermarket. As Twilley told The Atlantic:
The diet of the average American is almost entirely dependent on the existence of a vast, distributed winter–a seamless network of artificially chilled processing plants, distribution centers, shipping containers, and retail display cases that creates the permanent global summertime of our supermarket aisles.
In her exhibit, Twilley tells us peanuts do time in chillers across Georgia. We learn companies exploit cheap land outside urban centers around Interstates, like Allentown, PA, to construct vast industrial chilled holding centers.
This story helps fill in the reality of the infrastructure necessary to make your Chilean grapes, your Mexican avocado, and your Georgia peaches look and taste (sort of) like they're supposed to.
Tags: business, distribution, food, photography