Distributor:  Bullfrog Films
Length:  48 minutes
Date:  2002
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Grade level: 7-12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
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Deconstructing Supper

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A leading chef investigates food safety in the age of GMOs and industrial agriculture.

Deconstructing Supper

Ripe tomato salad. Creamy chicken soup. Grilled westcoast salmon.
Dinner is served.
But what's in our food and how is it grown?
Renowned chef John Bishop leads viewers on an eye-opening and engaging journey into the billion-dollar battle to control global food production. Starting with a gourmet meal in his five-star restaurant, Bishop travels the world -- from farmer's fields to biotech laboratories to supermarket aisles -- on a personal quest to find out what our food choices are.
With a hearty appetite for food and information, chef Bishop explores the politics and ethics of food. He discovers that 70% of processed foods on supermarket shelves in North America contain genetically modified ingredients. The handful of biotech companies who control genetically modified seeds claim this is the only way to feed the world's growing population. But are these foods safe? Are there other, less risky ways to feed ourselves? Our chef finds answers to these compelling questions and more.
From North America to Great Britain to India and back, John Bishop shares fascinating conversations and mouth-watering feasts with farmers, such as Michael Ableman, scientists and activists, such as Vandana Shiva. We see the actual transfer of DNA from bacteria into canola plants, and meet Canadian farmer Percy Schmeiser who is battling the giant Monsanto Corporation. We learn startling information about the milk we drink in North America and meet Indian farmers and activists fighting to keep traditional farming practices alive.
Deconstructing Supper is a ride every contemporary eater will want to take -- a thought-provoking and entertaining journey into the revolution in modern food production, and its effects on our lives.

'A beautiful film that uplifted my spirit and brought me more in touch with my love for food...Thoroughly mindful and compassionate, this is not a film that makes enemies. It's a film that make sense.' John Robbins, author, The Food Revolution, and Diet For A New America

'Deconstructing Supper is a fine film, important for every culinary resource library. With so many scientific and technological changes taking place in food production, I feel it is vital that both chefs and students and lovers of food in general be knowledgeable about the ingredients they use. Nobody should take lightly what is happening to our farm produce.' Anne Willan, Founder and President, LaVarenne at The Greenbrier

'Colourful and engaging, with fine camera-work...This is a film for all those who might just be wondering what is happening to the foods they used to know and love.' Brewster Kneen, The Rams Horn

'The film takes Bishop on an around-the-world trip...What he finds is an industrialization process in the world's farming industry that is frighteningly reminiscent of such historical events as the communist farm collectives and the Irish potato famine...As scary as a lot of this sounds Deconstructing Supper is neither gloomy nor ideological...(O)rganic farmers in California, Saskatchewan and India show there are working alternatives.' Brian Gorman, TV Data

'What's a GMO? Chef John Bishop discovers that, thanks to Monsanto Corporation, food just ain't what it used to be. In his globe-trotting investigation, this conscientious chef also illustrates that, despite Monsanto's monkey-business, 'natural food' production remains both a feasible and pleasurable enterprise.' Professor Timothy McGettigan, PhD, Department of Sociology, Colorado State University-Pueblo

'A fascinating, if disturbing, primer on the subject of genetically modified food. It manages to instruct without scolding, explore without preaching, and ultimately, should interest anybody who eats.' Toronto Star

'Superbly constructed...Incredibly informative as well as entertaining...Allows the audience to come to their own conclusions with the facts from both sides of the food issue presented.' Neil Ritchie, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy

'Deconstructing Supper tells a good story, and makes you wish you could afford organic produce more often.' The (Toronto) Globe and Mail

'Having a storyline places this film apart...In addition, there are some very good visuals...and dialogue which doesn't pull its punches.' Philip L. Bereano, University of Washington

'This illuminating film reminds us of the importance of knowing where our food comes from, and it shows us how the choices we make everyday about the food we eat are some of the most important decisions we make.' Alice Waters, Owner, Chez Panisse Restaurant

'The chemical industry's power over our food is a key message in this video. If you haven't heard the story of Percy Schmeiser's struggle with Monsanto, [Deconstructing Supper] is worth seeing just to hear him tell it.' Dana Jackson, The Land Stewardship Letter


Awards

Chris Award, Columbus International Film and Video Festival
Second Place in Category, EarthVision Environmental Film Festival
Prix Leonardo, Parma, Italy
MountainFilm in Telluride
Vermont International Film Festival
Hazel Wolf Environmental Film Festival
Bioneers Film Festival
EcoCinema, Rhodes, Greece
Marin Environmental Film Festival
The Green Festival, Washington DC
Amazing Earthfest, Kanab UT

Citation

Main credits

Bishop, John (narrator)
Kaplan, Marianne (film director)
Kaplan, Marianne (film producer)
Kaplan, Marianne (screenwriter)
Weisbord, Merrily (screenwriter)
Terhoch, Leonard (film producer)

Other credits

Cinematographer, Kirk Tougas; editor, Stuart De Jong; composer, Salvador Ferreras.


Distributor credits

Is Your Food Safe?

Leonard Terhoch and Marianne Kaplan
Marianne Kaplan
for MSK Productions, Inc.
Host: John Bishop

Docuseek2 subjects

Genetically Modified Organisms
Food
Citizenship, Social Movements and Activism
Environmental Health
Environmental Geography
Rural Studies
Culinary Arts

Distributor subjects

Agriculture
Biotechnology
Environment
Food And Nutrition
Gardening
Genetically Modified Foods
Hunger
International Studies
Organic Farming
Science, Technology, Society
Sustainability
Sustainable Agriculture

Keywords

food, John Bishop, biotechnology, genetically modified foods, genetically modified seeds, organic food, Michael Ableman, Vandana Shiva, Percy Schmeiser, Monsanto,"Deconstructing Supper",Bullfrog Films

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