Use Google Maps to spy on the farms that grow your food

For Bastille Day, I printed excerpts from Simone de Beauvoir’s description of the Chicago Stockyards in 1947 and noted that slaughterhouses today are located closer to the farmer and further from the eater. But that doesn’t mean you can’t visit them. The U.S. Food Policy Blog uses Google Maps to visit 10 U.S. locations that illustrate the country’s food policy, beginning with the world’s largest pig slaughterhouse in North Carolina, which was featured a few years ago in a damning Rolling Stone article by True/Slant’s own Jeff Tietz. Here’s a snapshot from Food Policy Blog on the first of those ten sites:
For people who want to know where their food comes from, Google Maps offers a profound passport to the landscape you choose to view, in place of the pastoral image that an interested party wants you to view. For most of these locations, you can explore even more using the street view feature.
10. The world’s largest pork slaughterhouse, the Smithfield plant in Tar Heel, NC, where workers are voting this month on a collective contract after years of company resistance to union organizing.

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