A few weeks ago, I read a book about what our burgers are really made of. It’s a simplified version of Fast Food Nation, written by Eric Schlosser. I will try to give you the best parts and interests of this story, and maybe you’ll change your mind about burgers and fast foods …
In this book, the story is separated in two parts that will be joined as the adventures go by. The first side of the book tells the story of 3 Mexicans : Sylvia and her husband Raul, and Coco, Sylvia’s sister. They want to reach the country where dreams become true : the United States of America. We will follow them during their journey across the desert and near the border.
The other side of the book tell us about Don, a marketing manager for Mickey’s, the fast food where he recently started to work. He still has to discover the truth about the meat in Mickey’s hamburgers : is there really manure in it ? (Manure is animal dung used for fertilizing the ground). Therefore, he has to go to Cody, a town in Colorado where there are a lot of fast food restaurants and the biggest meat packing factory.
Cody is also the destination of our Mexicans, who will work at the factory. They still are clandestine and they have no choice if they want to stay in USA. They are not very well paid, but they earn much more than in Mexico so they don’t really complain about their work. Don will investigate about the factory and discover terrible conditions of work and safety. But if you want to know more about the story, you’ll have to read the book !
Could you imagine there is manure on your burger ?
Did you know that Mexican immigrants are exposed to danger and under paid to prepare the dirty meat that all American frequently eat in fast foods ?
Well, Eric Schlosser confronts us with the truth in this book. Fast foods are just interested in producing at the lowest possible cost, and close their eyes regarding the conditions of meat preparation. But when someone like this writer bends over the subject, we learn the past of our burger in a story inspired by the reality and it doesn’t feel the same to go to a fast food after that. The version that I have read is the same that has been adapted in a film, which is also called Fast food Nation. The original book is more an investigation, whereas the film or this version of the book is fictionalized : the aim of the adaptation is to affect the American population more easily by telling a story.
Avril Lavigne is one of the actresses that took part to the film because she also wanted to denounce how dirty the meat of fast food restaurants is. The film and the book had a real impact on people’s state of mind, but a lot of Americans still think it would be hard to live without fast food restaurants.
If you want a survey of the book, you can look at this video :