The food industry has played at feminism to ensure in changing food habits of people by keeping women away from kitchen, noted environmentalist Sunita Narain said on Wednesday. “The Feminist movement has fallen prey so much to either the tobacco industry or the food industry. Because the food industry actually played at feminism to ensure that why should women cook, why should they slave over kitchen and why should they not actually think about changing food habits,” she said at Kochi.
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Speaking after releasing a book on food — First Food: Culture of Taste– at a venue of Kochi-Muziris Biennale in Fort Kochi, she said much like tobacco companies, food companies also found a great platform in feminist movements –women who returned home after a grueling day at work only to find that they had to cook and care for husbands and children.
“Both industries capitalised on this by promoting liberation of smoking and not cooking,” Narain said.
Narain, who is the director general of New Delhi-based advocacy group Centre for Science and Environment, said the food industry has “manouvered itself into our kitchens in what we eat and how we eat”.
“We are in imminent danger of losing nature as well as the knowledge that links it to our food and nutrition. This book is about the rediscovery of the knowledge that is not all lost, and the urgent imperative to fight back to reclaim our food and our habits,” Narain said about the book brought out by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).
Narain said the book was an attempt at reviving India’s traditional culture of eating home-cooked food with seasonal ingredients.
Authors of the book said the country’s traditional culinary knowledge was disappearing because people were losing the holders of that knowledge— grandmothers and mothers who managed food and brought to it cuisines that were local and nutritious.