The first print advertisement for Wonder Bread came out before the bread itself. It stated only that “a wonder” was coming. In a lot of ways, the statement was true. Wonder Bread was the perfect loaf. “Slow food” advocates have pronounced industrial … Continue reading →
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This is ninety nine percent, invisible one. The brain I'm roman Mars When I think about white bread, I use they think of wonder bread and I can picture of the loaves all lined up on the grocery store shelves. Imperfect uniform rose the red. Yellow and blue circles on the wonder, bread label or support to conjure balloons, floating away, taking us somewhere somewhere wondrous somewhere better the first print advertised. For wonder: bread which actually came out before the bread itself stated: that a wonder was coming. It's a wonder boys same Greenspan then a lot of ways in its time: underbred Billy. What it's a wonder. It was the perfect love, but now white bread, just wonder bread, but really any brand of industrially produced white bread, its thought of my food purists as part of a pie,
upload, the problem being that we don't know where food comes from and we might be consuming impure and unhealthy ingredients. The funny thing is industrial white, bread, that evenly sliced squishy moist perfectly white and wondrous loaf was once the I lay design solution to that very same problem. You want to grow bigger and Don't you ok! I found with daily into slices of wonder bread every meal. Give you ate elements you need. For much of human history. Bread has been, and still is, one of these most important foods- are human ancestors thirty thousand years ago, had accrued form of bread. Nearly every culture earth has some form of bread, importance of bread is, shall we say, into language. Take, for instance, the word companion. If we take the word companion back to its latin routes, we get com which is with an pan which has bred so
a companion is someone that you sit down and you you break red with that's our guide to all things: bread, Aaron, Barbara Strain, he's the author of the book White a social history. The store bought love. It is book air Also talks about the word. Lord, comes from a word in old English. I'm not sure how to pronounce it exactly, but on paper it looks like suffered each l, a f, o D, the traveller, and that meant the keeper of bread or the person who gives bread. That's striking, because it tells us that the very act of political rule was wrapped up in the bread supply. Plus think of all the ways that bread comes up. Culturally. Catholics believe that the committee In bread transubstantiation into the body of Christ, there's law prayer Matthew. Six eleven give us today our daily bread the jewish holiday of pass over centres around the preparation of bread and on and on.
In the middle ages, most people got something like eighty percent of their calories from bread, fast, word a millennium, or so in the late nineteenth century, people were still getting about thirty percent of their calories from Brett that so much bread. That's breaded every meal and some meals that were only bread from most of our long history with bread, the bread we ate made in our homes, eventually had small bakeries that supplied bread for more people, but they weren't exactly a pig of artisanal purity. A hundred plus years ago, bakeries were generally dirty and often underground usually terrible working conditions, and he never knew when the bigger would cut costs by cutting the dough with sawdust or some other portable additives.
During the time we're talking about the late eighteen hundreds early. Nineteen hundred there was a lot of food borne illness. Cholera, typhus alot of Americans were starting to fear their food and for good reason you are food, could kill you middle and upper class white native born Americans during that period. Go through this kind of freak out. Bout, the safety of their bread- and you see newspaper headlines during this time screaming dangerous bread threatens the city terms as your love. Things like that and and people were really freaked out. Every city was holding major hearings on on the bread question: the neighbourhood bakery that we romanticize today was the spectre of fear and terror in so people started getting really interested in where their food came from kindly before doing right now only to them, knowing where there
food came from and actively avoiding locally baked bread factory bread, the thinking was born not of unclean hands and an underground furnace, but in a modern light filled palace of industry. These palaces industry would supply bread to the masses and this bread would be white. Bread is a delicious food. Its labour blends perfectly well their boots, adding zest and enjoyment to any meal, flower in white, bread or recent technological innovations and of themselves they ve been around for millennia, technically speaking white flour is whole wheat. Flour with the brain and the germ from the weak girl sitting down industrial bakers chose bread as their flagship read because for them was a marker of purity and cleanliness and motor. And if this sentiment sounds vaguely racist you, while the racism was more than vague doktor, which Hutchinson, who is it
who did health columnist in new syndicated columnist in newspapers, argued that only white bread would fortify the white race to do the things it had to do and go out and conquer other peoples, and, if that's not revolting enough food reforms of the day referring to the white love as a chaste loaf and the dark love as defiled love and bread was actually never a real vector for contagion. That was Firstly, the meat and dairy supply It is why Aaron Barbara Strain argues that this fear over the safety of bread was an act. About bread, when I started to realize, was that it had become impossible in a native born middle, an upper class waits mines to separate fears about bread, safety from their fears about immigration, particularly the new southern and eastern european image.
Hence who is supposedly dirty and diseased and were were touching bred in in neighbourhood. Bakeries based The errand believes that our attraction to white bread came from real fears about food contagion. They got me Up unfairly with fears about immigrants as a shining wait, clean turn Marvel untouched by human hands. That was the answer This is a bad scary, supposedly dirty and disease product of immigration. And because white bread was white, thinking went you knew. It was free of dirt and other contaminants, which you might fear from your local bakery. Its whiteness was thus its proof of purity that logic is kind of flight, because lots, India, during that bakers used were White Chalk Alan, the bleach white love just needed one more thing before I can fully embody our need for uniformity. It needed to be sliced,
which brings us to a summer day in nineteen, twenty eight, let's say July: seven, nineteen, twenty eight on that day was July. Seventh, I checked in the town of choice coffee, Missouri people had gathered at first and ELM streets and they won't lined up around the block. I dont know if their lines down the block those weren't described, but but people were certainly eager to see this. However, they were gathered. People were there to witness the advent of packaged pre sliced bread, one order and Chillicothe Missouri spoke of housewives who were visit This bakery to see this lay spread how they had this. The real of enthusiasm in were just awe struck by this perfectly sliced bread. It was a small, edible vision of progress and the future people like sliced bread. So much a kid overstate how much they loved it and how quickly it caught on it was the best things I can't even think of another thing that was going to God
does bakers had the height, they had the sense of moral mission and they the design parameters, white, bread, in streamline loaves with you perform slices, but the sign of industrialize, ing and ass. Producing bread was still a little wacky. Bread, after all, is the of Micro organisms going through biological processes, bread is, time in temperature and a lot of other variables. In fact, That was one of the last major foods to get industrialized. Precisely because of how complex it is to make uniformly. The assembly process was really different than say making a car. Imagine if Henry Ford, Every time you wanted to make a car had to worry about the fact that his parts might grow or shrink depending the temperature and humidity that day that Augusta air coming through the factory might cause his card to deflate
through the kind of biological questions that early industrial bakers had to figure out. And so from a nineteen twenties and thirty's onward. Industrial bakers were constantly tinkering with the design of white bread. They cut the time. Took for the bread to rise by adding sugars and creating at the temperature. The editor the fires to allow those water and fat mixed together, better giving white bread, its height and more even grain, that also got rid of the whole. Because wonder thought with bread is made from better, not though it has no hold get wonders off, Eventually, vitamins were added and sold to the public as a means of making hearty young men who would be fit to fight in the war. Goodbye for the wonder at every meal give you as much fuss earth but thou metabolism as this egg at much, I am a red blood as three lamb chops as much nicer than for mental health as exciting as much energy tool. Glass of milk
little by little, various factories created their own recipes and innovations for industrial white bread and Oliver came to a head in nineteen. Fifty two in Rockford Illinois, USDA in permission with key figures of the industrial baking world, put together a multi year project that I kind of jokingly referred to as and Hatton Project of bread, multi year. Panoramic investigation of bread and bread, eating habits and the ultimate goal of the project where's to design a perfect loaf of white bread involved, focus groups, market research, devil, blind taste. Tests and product of the so called Manhattan. Project of bread was a white bread to half times as sweet as the average loaf available at the time and forty percent fluffy or two
I fear the manufacturers made the bread, the more people wanted to buy it, even though the rock for research also showed that they didn't really like it. They couldn't resist. The fluff consumer are choosing the flesh, your bread, but not particularly liking its texture but yet they were eating it in large quantities about a pound and a half per person per week. Not too long after the Rockford Study closes shop. White bread goes through an identity crisis. Where was once a feel good symbol of progress, white bread began to get used as an epithet meaning stuffy conservative square white, suburban in nineteen. Seventy, when Richard prior in a fit storms off this, each of his popular show at the Latin Theatre in LAS Vegas, saying that he is, he is absolutely done with this white bread humor from around that point forward. Camera cultural movements used. White bread as an emblem of the establishment of the silent majority of
Nixon's America, but then by the ninety, in eight is nineteen nineties the meaning starts to buy for Kate. It also starts to take on this If it can serve of white trash, so white bread starts to stand in for a poor white person who is making suppose the irresponsible decisions about diet and about their life, So I was fascinated by the way that white bread could mean essentially the opposite of itself, both I flew in suburban and poured in rural if there's one lesson from Edinburgh Strange research. It's that this debate over which kind of bread to eat white or wheat, it's not new In fact, it goes back thousands of years in Platos Republic. Plato sets up this kind of debate about whether ideal powers, the ideal society or city state, should fund on a diet of.
Whole green gruel associated with wild life or defied white, bread, cakes. The most interesting about these debates in history says Erin is that they are often about everything except bread, so in Platos case even back. Then it was really not about the healthiness Brad. So much as it was about anxieties about whether the Athens was losing moral virtue, because it was becoming less connected to the land risk that debates about white bread and brown bread get tied up into large questions about what do people think about progress would be think about industrialization class and hierarchy. The point is that when we were worried about whether or not we should keep white bread or brown bread, it's you. Usually about much larger questions. We can learn.
Something about our own society, our own anxieties and aspirations. By looking at those debates about what counts is good bread ninety nine percent. Invisible was produces reply, SAM Greenspan and really guy wander ran. With gaiety, mingle, Avery, truffle men and me roman Mars. It is based on an interview we heard on Benjamin Walkers theory of everything, a fine radio Toby, a programme that you should already love a Benjamin's. Recent episodes. We tell this we have held a Benjamin. I first met fourteen years ago and started immediately conspire to make something like we ve made in radio Toby the day, a place where the most creative radio makers produced directly most curious and engage listeners he's check it out We are a project of ninety one point: seven local public radio, K, L W in San Francisco and produced the offices of arc and an
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Transcript generated on 2020-02-15.