As I was researching for what was supposed to be a post on green snack foods, I realized just how eco-harmful the food industry can be. Looking at Newsweek’s Green Rankings for 2009, only 28 of the top 500 companies are from the food and beverage industry. Yes, a measly 5%. Plus, the best ranking food company (Brown and Forman) ranks in 374th place overall! In other words, the large-scale food industry blows.
I knew I just couldn’t lie to the intelligent ladies that you are, so I scrapped the article and came up with this.
Here are some of the worst snack options and their greener replacements to reduce your environmental impact… and your waistline. Seriously, think about this next time you go shopping; we’re all probably doing more harm than we even know.
Culprit #1: Tyson
Why it sucks: Tyson is one of the largest companies in the meat industry. According to the movie Food, Inc. (which you all should see!), such large scale farming contributes to pollution, greenhouse gases, depletion of resources, antibiotic resistance and illness in workers and consumers, and poor employee treatment.
Don’t eat: Tyson’s fried chicken fillet sandwich. For so many reasons. Gross.
Eat instead: Gardenburger’s Original Veggie Burgers
Culprit #2: Smucker’s
Why it sucks: In environmental impact scores, Smucker’s ranks a lowly 463rd out of 500 U.S. companies with a score of 7.8 out of 100. I think if you got a 7.8% on a test you’d officially get an F-.
Don’t eat: Smucker’s Goober Jam/Peanut Butter sandwich
Eat instead: Trader Joe’s Organic Peanut Butter and banana sandwich
Culprit #3: Dr. Pepper Snapple Group
Why it sucks: This beverage company, like most, use large amounts of plastic to make single-serving bottles of soda and juice. Not only is soda linked to obesity and diabetes, but the plastic is also very energy intensive to make and often end up in landfills. Yeah, Best Stuff on Earth, my a**.
Don’t drink: Dr. Pepper, Hawaiian Punch, Snapple, or any of that crap.
Drink instead: Club soda with a squeeze of lime.
Culprit #4: Hormel
Why it sucks: All of their products are heavily packaged in unnecessary amounts of plastic and glass, both of which use a lot of energy to make and never decompose.
Don’t eat: Hormel Compleats Microwave Meals
Eat instead: Amy’s Microwave Meals
Got an opinion on the food industry or specific corporations? Have your say in the comments section!