Grist

It’s no surprise that gigantic, multinational companies own most of the dominant organic brands out there. Big Food’s tentacles stretch far: Just four companies control 80 percent of the beef market, and many competing brands in the snack aisle huddle under the umbrella of the same parent company.

The corporate control and consolidation of the food industry is the central theme of Wenonah Hauter’s new book, Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and Farming in America. Hauter, the executive director of Food & Water Watch, explores “the battle over the food and farming in America” as independent farmers and companies struggle to stay afloat in the face of corporate mergers and bad food policy.

But before you put down your (Kellogg-produced) Gardenburger to protest your local cattle ranch, Hauter warns a bigger response is required. “[I]t’s time that we stop demonizing farmers as the chief…

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