An investigative journalist takes you inside the corporate meat
industry—a shocking, in-depth report every American should read.
The biggest takeover in American business that you’ve n ever
The American supermarket seems to represent the best in America:
abundance, freedom, choice. But that turns out to be an illusion.
The rotisserie chicken, the pepperoni, the cordon bleu, the
frozen pot pie, and the bacon virtually all come from four
In The Meat Racket, investigative reporter Christopher Leonard
delivers the first-ever account of how a handful of companies
have seized the nation’s meat supply. He shows how they built a
system that puts farmers on the edge of bankruptcy, charges high
prices to consumers, and returns the industry to the shape it had
in the 1900s before the meat monopolists were broken up. At the
dawn of the twenty-first century, the greatest capitalist country
in the world has an oligarchy controlling much of the food we eat
and a high-tech sharecropping system to make that possible.
Forty years ago, more than thirty-six companies produced half of
all the chicken Americans ate. Now there are only three that make
that amount, and they control every aspect of the process, from
the egg to the chicken to the chicken nugget. These companies are
even able to raise meat prices for consumers while pushing down
the price they pay to farmers. And tragically, big business and
politics have derailed efforts to change the system.
We know that it takes big companies to bring meat to the American
table. What The Meat Racket shows is that this industrial system
is rigged against all of us. In that sense, Leonard has exposed
our heartland’s biggest scandal.