Have you seen
No, it's not a sequel to the Meatrix, but it has something of the
same visual appeal, and it's gotten a lot of people talking. In
late February, at least four workshop presenters at the Upper Midwest
Organic Farming Conference opened their sessions by putting Phil
Howard's "Organic Industry Structure" chart up on the
screen. Look, they said. This is what we're up against.
It's a chart that's worth a thousand words. Originally published
in the California Certified Organic Farmers' CCOF Magazine (vol.
20, no. 4, Winter 2003-04) as part of an article on consolidation
in the food and agriculture industry, it graphs organic brand acquisitions
and introductions by 13 of the world's largest food and beverage
companies. No doubt you've heard or read about many of these developments
already; but the chart's visual power drives home the potential
implications for the organic farming community in a way mere prose
A post-doctoral researcher at the University of California at Santa
Cruz's Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS),
Howard has been obliged to update the chart to keep pace with the
rapidly shifting world of corporate organics. In the four months
since he first put it together, Dean Foods completed its acquisition
of Horizon Organic Dairy, and Groupe Danone increased its share
of Stonyfield Farms to 80 percent of all non-employee stock.