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Big Food Keeps Growing

by Sandy Todd Webster on Mar 16, 2017

Food for Thought

The pace of corporate merger and acquisition in the food industry is as rapid as it is aggressive. Nearly every day, more news emerges of companies literally at the top of the food chain swallowing smaller brands into their portfolios. How contracted has it become? In a new book, Concentration and Power in the Food System (Bloomsbury 2016), Philip Howard, PhD, associate professor in the department of community sustainability at Michigan State University, takes a detailed dive into the web of corporate food, mapping who owns what and explaining how it potentially affects consumers.

Howard points out that at almost every key stage of the food system, four firms alone control 40% or more of the market. Any more control than this could give these companies the power to drive up prices for consumers and reduce the rate of innovation. Researchers have identified additional problems resulting from these trends, including negative impacts on the environment, human health and communities. The book is available on Amazon.

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About the Author

Sandy Todd Webster

Sandy Todd Webster IDEA Author/Presenter

Sandy Todd Webster is Editor in Chief of IDEA's publications, including the award-winning IDEA FITNESS JOURNAL and IDEA FOOD & NUTRITION TIPS, the industry's leading resources for fitness, wellness and nutrition professionals worldwide. Sandy joined IDEA in 2001 as executive editor of IDEA PERSONAL TRAINER and IDEA FITNESS MANAGER magazines and was promoted to lead the editorial team in 2003. More than 20 years in magazine publishing, marketing communications and creative services have shaped her straightforward approach to multi-channel communication. Early experience in Los Angeles as a sports writer/reporter, and then enriching years as a managing editor in allied health care publishing have pulled her across a spectrum of stimulating subject matter. Fitness, health and nutrition reside at the perfect center of this content continuum, she feels. A Chicago native, Sandy grew up fully engaged in various competitive sports. Her drive and dedication as an athlete translate to a disciplined work ethic and unwavering approach to challenge in her career. Shortly after graduating journalism school from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, she was recruited to L.A. for her first post in magazine publishing. After two decades of working on magazines--and now in the throes of applying the unbelieveable multi-media content delivery options available in the magazine 2.0 world--she is still "completely in love" with the creative process it takes to deliver meaningful, inspirational content to end users. She is an accomplished home cook and gardner who would love to combine those skills and passions with her health and fitness background to continue educating readers about a well-balanced, healthy lifestyle.