Tag Archives: consumer fantasy

New PBS show “Food Forward” Addresses Problems in our Food System

Fact #1: we live in a consumer culture.

Fact #2: We enjoy watching shows that create fantasy worlds for the audience.

The other day I posted about this, pointing out that consumer fantasy allows the Food Network, for example, to blend content and promotion which in turn generates profit for the network, but also closes off our ability to be exposed to a wider range of discourses about food (Ketchum, 232). Since no advertiser wants to promote their product on a show that addresses controversial issues surrounding food or health, the more deeply tied show content becomes to selling goods, the less likely we are to be exposed to any serious issues within our contemporary food system (Ketchum, 232).

While the Food Network hasn’t announced any new shows- I’m proud to say that PBS has. According to the Huffington Post, Food Forward might not teach you about hot new restaurants or ingredients, but you will learn about food issues that face a lot of Americans. In a press release emailed to the HP, Greg Roden (the show’s director) said:

Food Forward offers something different. Our program goes beyond celebrity chefs, cooking competitions and recipes to reveal the compelling stories and inspired solutions from Americans striving to create a more just, sustainable and delicious alternative to how and what we eat.

Sounds good to me. I wonder who’s sponsoring the show, how long it will last, and how deeply it will delve into issues within our food system.

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