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.

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.

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2 Comments

  1. And you needed a news story to know this?
    You had no idea that foods are frozen or cooled to prolong their marketability?

  2. This time of year, we eat straight from the garden. Lettuce an herbs, snap peas, and green beans are eaten only minutes after harvest, and it will continue like that until fall. Winter is long though and most of our food has been in one sort of storage or another.

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