Wonder Foods: The Science and Commerce of Nutrition (California Studies in Food and Culture #80) (Paperback)
Between 1850 and 1950, experts and entrepreneurs in Britain and the United States forged new connections between the nutrition sciences and the commercial realm through their enthusiasm for new edible consumables. The resulting food products promised wondrous solutions for what seemed to be both individual and social ills. By examining creations such as Gail Borden's meat biscuit, Benger's Food, Kellogg's health foods, and Fleischmann's yeast, Wonder Foods shows how new products dazzled with visions of modernity, efficiency, and scientific progress even as they perpetuated exclusionary views about who deserved to eat, thrive, and live. Drawing on extensive archival research, historian Lisa Haushofer reveals that the story of modern food and nutrition was not about innocuous technological advances or superior scientific insights, but rather about the powerful logic of exploitation and economization that undergirded colonial and industrial food projects. In the process, these wonder foods shaped both modern food regimes and how we think about food.
Lisa Haushofer is a physician and historian of science, medicine, and food. She is currently Senior Research Associate in the History of Medicine Department at the University of Zurich.