The food companies know us now and we’re doomed to fall for their charms.

Americans eat with their eyes. Yes, this is true. In my case, however, I also eat with my sense of humor. How else would you explain the increase in my consumption of Skittles since I discovered their Twitter account? I eat Skittles mainly because: 1. They taste good and 2. The social media people at Skittles are hilarious. And even though I like the taste, I wouldn’t be spending a few bucks every week buying Skittles if it weren’t for funny Tweets.

When I read the article, Food Companies Work to Make it Look Natural, I was surprised. I had noticed that food was looking tastier in the plastic packaging and I had mentioned to my co-shoppers that these companies were really rocking it with their new marketing, but I never thought about the people who actually engineered and then packaged the ham I put on my sandwich every day. But now I have. If the price of ham seems to go up in the next few years, I shouldn’t be that surprised now, because just think about all the people who had to work to put that ham in the package. First, there was the pig farmer, then the butcher, then the people who bought the pig, then the transporters, then the processing guys, then the guys that designed the label on the packaging, then the people who shipped the package, then the person who put it in the refrigerator section, then the lady at the checkout and then me. That’s a lot of people. I think that if I did the whole process myself, I could get a whole pig full of a year’s supply of ham for just $299. (Isn’t that how much pigs are costing these days?) But there’s no way I would do that.

I think my dad should have become a food designer for Kraft. He loves food and he loves “presentation.” I think he would have made a great turkey slicer though I think he would have been too much of a perfectionist and the food company would have to let him go for cutting meat to look too rounded. He’s just not able to cut jaggedy pieces of cheese. Not me, though. I still slice cheese like an eight-year-old whose mom just allowed her to start helping out in the kitchen. My cuts are authentically bad.

But Wendy’s is doctoring their square burger recipe to look like less of a cookie-cutter square. And somehow that’s getting us to eat more square burgers. If it wasn’t working, they wouldn’t do it. I think this food-face-lift is strange, though funny. I like food that looks tasty, but I also am sort of creeped out by the fact that I am caving to this marketing scheme. Though, I won’t go for the Thanksgiving leftover turkey bit; I don’t like that particular brand of fowl or I probably would cave!

Tata for now.

Rece

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