Blog Post 4

What I ate…

Yesterday at work (Panera) I had a half salad and a half sandwich.

  • lettuce
  • tomatoes
  • onions
  • corn
  • dressing
  • turkey
  • chicken
  • cheese
  • bacon
  • cucumbers

Those are all the ingredients I had in my food yesterday. Having taken this class and having to think beyond where do I get food such as stores more of where they are grown and produced and in the way they are done so makes me wonder if what I am eating is doing harm or good. SYGMA supplies Panera with some of it’s food. And knowing that Panera is trying to get its clean food concept across they do have some moral aspect in their mission beside “a loaf of bread in every arm”. Still some it’s food is frozen and made elsewhere. I work there and still question how we get some of the food. Being an employee doesn’t give me much inside on where the suppliers get their food or where else that same food is being distributed. All I know is that there are ingredients that aren’t allowed in what they serve and they have a huge list of them but do they get their food locally, nationally, internationally? After asking my manager a serious of question concerning I only got a crazy look from him and short answers. Panera get’s their food nationally.  Researching was very difficult and a dead end. I am unable to find where SYGMA get’s their food. Looking into their website it looks very businessy. Panera does say that their chicken is cage free even before the egg but what about its produce? Do they use chemicals to grow their produce? How clean is their suppliers process of cleaning and cutting the produce? I still have questions that I have not answered. Honestly I have more questions than what I started with. Who would have known that thinking beyond what should I eat today would turn out to give me in a (good) way anxiety to know more about my food. I am not sure how to feel about food when I go out to restaurants or grocery stores to buy food. I love to make food at home but I still have  a limited power over my food.

The reading…

Every week we have read an article or section of a book on food and the impact that it has on society. In this weeks reading I relearned that some food that we have today was not around YEARS ago. There were floating gardens in Azteca (Mexico) that harvested food so that Louis XIV could eat. Besides having to think back in time when there weren’t a lot of food and having to hunt and grow enough to survive the article also said that in today’s society they have shifted their attention. From farming enough to survive to an agro-food system on health nutrition, economic development, and community activism. They also talk about how it’s important to have accessibility and affordability of food. Farming was a necessity that every person encountered. No matter where in the world they harvested food based on culture they had, traditions, educational purposes, and morale. Today we have corn, potato, tomato, vanilla, tobacco, beans, avocados, pecans, CHOCOLATE and other foods are New World Foods that we as a population were fortunate enough to have found them though “discovering” America. We went from farming what we knew to learning and educating ourselves of new food and opening our taste for foods. Those who taught us shared their traditions and culture. We later showed others and a wave of cultures and traditions were formed along the world. I am amazed at how much food affects us in every aspect. From having to choose what to eat to making decisions as a child from what is good for our bodies to learning how to plant some type of plant in elementary school. When I think back to my educational life my teachers always talked about plants, in science it was their process of making food and parts of a plant (cells) as well as leaning how to grow a lima bean in a little plastic cup with cotton and water. Food is a huge variable in life. As so we should make more thoughtful decisions on what we consume and how we grow what we consume.

12 thoughts on “Blog Post 4

  1. I think it’s interesting how you even asked your manager and he didn’t have specific answers to your questions. Maybe he knows the dirty truth or maybe he really just doesn’t know the truth behind Panera’s source. I read somewhere that Panera’s chicken is grade F on the scale of quality. I think they should be more open about sharing where their food comes from. Why should they be secretive if there’s nothing to hide?

  2. I think working at any food place, fast food or restaurant, makes someone question where the good comes from and how it is made. By working somewhere like this, talking to someone who does, and learning things such as we do in a class like this would change many perspectives of food choices made day to day.

  3. It’s interesting that not even your manager knew where the food came from. It raises a lot of suspicions about how we eat and where it comes from on a daily basis. Especially at a restaurant that refers to themselves “healthy” like Panera, you would like to know what exactly goes into each item.

  4. I found it interesting how Panera always advertises how fresh and natural their food is, but at the same time one of their own workers doesn’t even have all the answers. Its nice though that their chicken is cage free. I feel like working in the food industry or a restaurant can give you a different outlook on food than just being a regular consumer.

  5. Moralesmorade,

    I relate to you in this post. This class has me constantly question where the food I am eating is coming; and it’s becoming very challenging! I hope this continues to challenge me to better my options while giving me guidance on the best sources.

  6. I think it’s really good that Panera Bread is trying to get all of their food to be clean! And it must be very interesting to work at a restaurant and see how their food is made.
    When doing research I also found out a lot of facts about some of the ingredients that were in my meal and it was very interesting find where the ingredients came from!

  7. I liked how you shared your personal experience about working at Panera. Many chain restaurants advertise how healthy and fresh their ingredient are but as you explained earlier that is not the case. You spoke about the article and how back in the day farming was a necessity for every single person but I think that is it is interesting that in our day and age farming considered outdated and the value of farming has gone down .

  8. I love the questions that you have come up with. They are very deep and specific. Unfortunately, your manager does not have the answers. Which I think is incredibly important. Because what a customer wanted to know?!?!

  9. As an athlete I used to go to Panera a lot with my soccer team, because I was told it was healthy. The way they promote their food also makes them look like they have really healthy food. About a year or two ago I had a lot of friends that got a job at Panera and they told me what the food looks like before it is served to us and I was so shocked!

  10. That’s really crazy that your manager doesn’t know where the food comes from or like what’s in them. I don’t know if it’s just Panera but I think that many employees under fast food chains don’t take the time to formulate questions of origin.

  11. Coming from someone who has never worked with food and has only ever worked retail, it’s really odd to hear about how the food we are receiving when we order at a restaurant has traveled really far, some internationally even, to find its way upon our plates for us to eat. And how it is really hard to track down where that food is even coming from.

  12. Your perspective on this issue – as an employee – is really interesting. From the comments, we can see how mysterious the whole process of food procurement is.

    I want to comment on another thing you brought up: how many of the foods we consider staples had their origins in the New World, in Aztec and Mayan culture. The history of colonialism can be seen on our plate.

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