I shop predominantly at farmer's markets during the spring and summer, cooking and freezing enough meals to last me through the cold, dry months of winter. I recently received a coupon (!) for 20% off my produce purchase at a large supermarket chain and decided to try to stock up on some roasting veggies and perhaps even pick up enough for a fresh stir-fry. While I was wary of the ginormous store boasting aisles upon aisles of pre-packaged junk food and non-supermarkety items like dvds and tchochkes, I never expected to find barely stocked vegetables rubbery and decrepit with age.
As a member of the hard-working, un-indebted middle-class, I identify with these carrots. Why? Because no one is standing up for them* as they wither away into oblivion. And, lest you think these were an anomaly, here are their neglected, decaying brethren.
Responsible members of the middle class are being forced to bear the fiscal brunt of the country's current financial woes, suffering consequences that have stemmed from other people's irresponsibility. My fellow veggies seem to be in the same boat.
Between skyrocketing prices, minimal availability, and vile representation, for many people fresh produce is being squeezed out of the daily food pyramid just as the middle class is being obliterated from the American landscape.
The meat and dairy industries have the money to finance television commercials and print ads to keep themselves flush amidst gross misconduct, but who is standing up for the venerable carrot?
* I did contact the offending supermarket, Stop & Shop, to complain, but I have received no response.