Members and friends of Slow Food and readers of Michael Pollan’s recent works have had their eyes opened to the staggeringly large role of corn in our economy. Recent estimates from 2007 suggest that in the United States alone, 92.9 million acres of farmland are planted with corn, most of which is used in sweeteners, starches, oils, fuel, and animal feed. Only a small percentage is grown for direct human consumption.
King Corn is a revealing documentary about “two friends, one acre of corn, and the subsidized crop that drives our fast-food nation.” As described on the film’s website:
Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis, best friends from college on the east coast, move to the heartland to learn where their food comes from. Eighty years ago, Ian and Curt’s great-grandfathers lived just a few miles apart, in the same rural county in northern Iowa. With the help of friendly neighbors, genetically modified seeds, nitrogen fertilizers, and powerful herbicides, they plant and grow a bumper crop of America’s most productive, most subsidized grain on one acre of Iowa soil. But when they try to follow their pile of corn into the food system, what they find raises troubling questions about how we eat–and how we farm.
The California Endowment is hosting a screening of King Corn followed by a discussion with Aaron Woolf, the film’s director:
When: Thursday, March 20, 2008 at 6:00pm
Where: The California Endowment, 1000 North Alameda Street, Los Angeles
Cost: The event and parking are free, but reservations are required. To reserve your place, visit the California Endowment website.
For more information on the film and on the issues it examines, visit the King Corn website.