Skip to comments.Influential voices in food movement seek better worker wages
Posted on 12/25/2013 10:57:28 AM PST by thecodont
Since he wrote "Fast Food Nation" more than a decade ago, muckraking author Eric Schlosser has noticed a sympathy gap in the food movement that he helped foster. Some foodies seem to care more about the treatment of the animals they eat than the workers who prepare and serve them.
"It's not all foodies by any means," Schlosser said. "But the food movement can get sidetracked into wealthy, upper-middle-class people caring about food as status, caring about food as pleasure. I'm a huge supporter of animal welfare, but the compassion for the abuse of animals is so much more excessive, I think, than for low-wage workers in this country."
That is changing, as interest in the plight of low-wage restaurant workers is becoming part of the national conversation - from President Obama calling for a higher minimum wage, to one-day strikes by fast-food workers this month in 100 U.S. cities, to Pope Francis denouncing the wage inequality in a world where CEOs of fast-food chains are making 1,200 times as much as line cooks.
Supporting workers Now, some of the most influential voices in the food movement - including Monterey resident Schlosser, best-selling author Michael Pollan and pioneering Berkeley chef Alice Waters - are chiming in.
They are connecting the dots between different camps in the food movement by saying it's impossible to care about eating sustainably produced food when food service workers are not making sustainable wages.
(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...
What we want is a world where everyone gives us everything we desire for free.
Obama promises it - so it must be true.
This guy is a huge lib, but to his credit he wrote an excellent book (well researched too) about nuclear weapons safety and the Damascus Arkansas Atlas missile accident.
Title is “Command and Control”.
Now what is interesting is that the “food luminaries” of the “food movement” have discovered that their brand of gastronomic elitism has generated a “sympathy gap” for the people who work at lower wages at fast-food establishments. Watch the nervous maneuvering of the progressives as they desperately search for a political bookend to keep things from falling off the shelf.
"Inequality" is the new "War on Women." Problem is, is that the sheeple and LIVs are going to lap this up and the Dems will likely hold the Senate and may make inroads in the House.
Just another reason why the Republican Party is atrocious at messaging and counteracting leftist talking points.
This answer to this “movement” will be a vast increase in food prep and service automation and more low skill workers ending up on permanent unemployment. The dependency fostering left will probably like the outcome while piously supporting new Federal programs to help the unemployed.
a commonplace defect in modern day “do-gooders” is that almost all of them want YOU to pay for their various projects
What in the hell is a “food movement,” and how could such a thing possibly have different “camps” in it? Doesn’t anybody speak English in the blue states anymore?
“Food movement”? Do they ever tire of coming up with “revolutionary” BS?
If only rich people weren’t so selfish, we could ALL be rich!
Apparently they can’t burn wood in their fireplaces but they have plenty of other people’s money to burn.
I remember when food was just food and there was no ideology attached to it.
This should push forward automation in fast food, as well as the end of this industry being a gateway into the world of work for many of America’s youth.
Future fast food workers will make more, but they’ll almost all be adults with enough know how to keep the robots working. The folks standing out on the fast food picket lines whining about not getting paid more to police the parking lot will take their permanent place in the ranks of the unemployed.
I recommend to those who are so strident about the 15.00 minimum wage, etc that they get together, buy or start a franchise, and operate it based on the ideas they espouse (just to show the rest of us low-lifes how easily it can be done).
I think recent history is enough to see the true motive. If Fast Food become unaffordable, no one will eat Fast Food. They have been targeted and demonized by the nazis, and now we are watching the trained attack dogs close in.
>>What in the hell is a food movement,<<
It’s what happens approximately 30 hours after food is ingested and passes through your intestines. I don’t feel I need to go into more detail.
The only real food movement is from farm to market, market to consumer, consumer’s alimentary canal and trash pickup service.
In other words, communists and other social justice types.
You hit the nail on the head.
If it’s that easy to run a business and pay these low level workers $15 an hour, and still make a profit for the business, let them show us how it’s done.
I have worked in the finance end of a major fast food company. And based on my experience, the biggest single expense in a fast food franchise is paying the hired help.
The profit margins are smaller than many people think in an individual fast food franchise location. If the help had to be paid $15 an hour, there would be fewer jobs, and the cost of the products sold would have to be higher.
There are other costs too that people don’t know about. In the fast food company I worked in, the franchisees paid 8% of their gross sales off the top, to the Corporate level, as a royalty. They also were locked into buying all of their supplies from certain favored vendors, chosen by Corporate.
My overall point is that while fast food places are profitable for the most part, they are not able to just absorb a doubling of labor costs at the crew level, without either significant job cuts, or significant price increases in food sold.
And if food prices at fast food places went up drastically, it’s predictable that the customers will hit the drive thru much less often. Total gross sales could easily decline, resulting in even more job losses.
My first high school job was at McDonalds. I spent most of my shifts making milkshakes for $1.10/hr. There was no automatic machine for the shakes: syrup and mix dispensers, the shake machine with a bunch of spindles and a cooler. Today the counter clerk presses a button to get a shake. In 5 years the entire burger prep process will be automated from patties and buns to finished product, made to order and wrapped.
Oh, they have a plan for lots of camps, alright. Just not yet.
To paraphrase an old saying: The difference is that the workers are involved, the animals are committed.
Thanks for the inside information. The “food movement” people know nothing about how a business operates, apparently.
The drive by these businesses to hire illegal immigrants is based on the very very thin profit margin, I think. I don’t know if those hiring practices will be affected at all if the minimum wage level is increased (tell me, when was the last time you saw an American of any race or age behind the counter of one of these places?). It will result in more illegal immigrants being paid higher wages. So much for the profit margin.
Well - if we pay them enough to get off welfare, I suppose society benefits in the long run.
Its not that simple though - if we pay unskilled workers more than they’re worth, the price of food either has to go up or fewer of them are going to be working in the fast food business.
After all, its not highly trained chefs we’re talking about here.
“Doesnt anybody speak English in the blue states anymore?”
Only by old people.
“about nuclear weapons safety “
It is astonishing that no nukes have gone off accidently. I expect this to change when the Arab culture makes their own. I went to school with dozens of Iranians (not Arabs, but the same culture.) They have zero concept of safety and seem unable to predict the (obvious) outcome of their actions.
If wages aren’t tied to productivity our system can’t work, which is exactly what the socialists want.
Well, then these influential voices should open their own damn restaurants and pay their own employees whatever wage they are campaigning for. Failing that, they can STFU.
True, there is no OSHA in the Gaza. ;)
This isn’t about making things better, it is about collapsing our system.
So does this mean tips are no longer necessary?
The “food workers” will have even MORE problems when their jobs are automated out of existence. . .
No, that’s when gov’t will step in and FORCE the businesses to hire people at the gov’t-mandated wage.
All businesses will eventually become government property.
Pray that day doesn’t come.
When you stop and think about it, that is the way it should be. Animals destined to be food should be treated well, and they can't speak for themselves with much clarity.
The workers who prepare and serve them, on the other hand, are independent actors presumably having minds of their own and a manner with which to speak. When one looks at the people demanding $15 per hour for $7.50 worth of work, one can get understandably confused about that.
In 5 years, there won't be anybody to take the order, either. All that will be required will be somebody to fill the hoppers, sweep the floors, wipe the tables and clean the bathrooms. A roving techie can keep the machines in repair for a whole bunch of restaurants.
The libtards are putting their own people out of work, and blaming everybody but themselves in the process. Look at these union idiots picketing for a doubling of wages: Who do you think they'll blame when they get sacked and replaced with robots?
Any fast-food chain that isn't looking into automation right now is begging for hardship later.
Possibly one of the most stupid statements ever made by someone still capable of fogging a mirror.
The Missile system at Damascus was a Titan II.
Agreed. That’s a lot of stupid in one sentence.
If this is how they think, I don't think I want whatever it is they are having.
Thanks, it slipped my mind.