A Quick History Lesson: The dominant narrative of the food system for the last century has been industrialization and commodification. Food companies have sacrificed nutrient density at the altar of price and convenience. The U.S. now has the largest caloric surplus of any civilization in the history of mankind. But these are largely empty calories, devoid of many of the most nourishing nutrients that humans have subsisted on for hundreds of thousands of years, and derived from a small handful of homogenized genetically-modified crops like soybeans and corn.
It’s about our bodies and our planet. In addition to the nutrient-poor crisis in the food aisles, the manner in which we produce, distribute and consume food is not sustainable for the soil, farmers, livestock or ourselves. Something has to be done … and something is.
A brave new world is dawning. Happily, this narrative is rapidly changing. The knowledge and values that consumers associate with food production, distribution and sale are drastically altering how, why, where, when and what we eat. Driven by a unique combination of economics, demographics and technology, consumers are forcing change on an industry that has become stagnant and homogenized. They are ushering in one of the most profound cycles of experimentation and innovation the food chain has seen in 100 years.
And its focus is nutrient density. Small, independent and start-up consumer brands focused on delivering nutrient density in simple and approachable ways can fundamentally disrupt the old food chain by going toe-to-toe with large brands that are optimized for profits, not people.
Goodness. The future looks healthier. There is a quiet revolution underway. Brands will be tested and valued by what they stand for, how they operate and what they deliver to their most important stakeholder: consumers. Companies will refocus the food chain around nutrient density, bringing sanity, sustainability and goodness back to the kitchen table.
By Megan Reamer, co-founder of Jackson’s Honest Chips. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.