In our wealthy nations quality food is treated as a speciality, for those occasions where we have something to celebrate – maybe…because those chicken wings on offer this week cannot be left on the supermarket shelve….
In the words of a radio advert of an animal welfare Ngo; “this week chicken wings, again cheaper than cat feed. Ever asked yourself how this is possible?” Cheap food comes at a price, the price we do not pay directly, we pay indirectly, by becoming resistant to antibiotics we heard last week. Its heavy use in amongst others the chicken industry poses serious human health consequences.
The Dutch supermarkets are notorious for their narrow low price/best deal strategies. In his excellent analysis “Het boodschappenbolwerk” of the insular Dutch supermarket branch Frits Kremer shows how this sector has been able defend, divert, ignore and ridicule quests for more responsiblity on their part for a sustainable food supply chain. Contrary to many of their European colleagues, they hide behind ‘this is what the consumer wants’ instead of taking the kind of leadership which their market power obliges.