No, offense, Mom, but I think Australian food might be better.
…In reality, I think it might even be just non-US food. Ouch.
Australian food systems seem to be of a better quality than the US. They are simpler; this simplicity, paired with less chemicals, preservatives, industrial farms in general lends toward better quality.
Its really not just my imagination! Here are a few points of my conjecturing to back them up:
- The fruits and vegetables have more flavor. Without the crazy system of industrial agriculture that the US has with food powerhouses like California, production is of lesser quantity, and of better quality. Different, eh? The average cucumber has more flavor and is juicier. The apples and strawberries are much smaller, but have more sweetness and flavor.
- The Eggs are… eggier. I had a start when I cracked my first egg in Australia. Really. I examined it closely, smelled it, and had to check the expiration on the carton, I was so surprised. It may sound ridiculous, but I was startled because the yolk was a vibrant orange instead of the normal yellow. I discovered that this is because chickens in Australia are all completely free range. But I didn’t expect such a stark difference! The picture doesnt quite do it justice, but the difference really is initially alarming.
- The Cows are Happier! The default for meat/ dairy is free range. I don’t even eat meat and this makes me excited. These cows have a a) much, much lower environmental impact b) produce more nutritious meat that contains healthy fats like Omega 3 fatty acids that cows do not get from eating corn mush on industrial farms (same goes for milk!).
- There are more “real” ingredients in foods. Okay quick history: the corn industry in the US produces so much product (due to subsidies) that they needed to invent ways to use it. Hence ethanol, common ingredients like corn syrup, glucose, sucrose, xanathin gum, many preservatives, canola oil, corn starch– the list goes on and on. Australia does not have this huge, subsidized corn industry, hence the ingredients that go into making anything, I have noticed, tend to be simpler. I can actually, generally, understand what went into a can of soup or a candy bar (not always) more often than in the states. For a foodie, it is a happy relief to find average store-bought bread without glucose.
I am nerdily excited about these things — I admit it. It is an amazing thing to me to witness a food system that is not, yet as colluded as the American one.
The sad part is that a lot of the world seeks to eat like Americans. They want more food, more meat, for cheaper. In reality, they don’t know what a good thing they’ve got going. There are countless consequences for health and the environment. My greatest hope is that Australians, or members of any country for that matter, find value in the simplicity and therefore quality of their food and do not follow suit with the US as often is the case eventually.
This is the first of likely many more food posts to come. Watch out!