What started as an awareness raising and ethnographic styled walk through Sierra Leone, this site now details the encounters of a not so academic academic who spends more time occupying Wall Street and squats than a university...

Monday, December 24, 2012


So I officially have a job!  I had an interview a little bit back with a large health foods supermarket retailer and am very happy to say I have gotten the job.  I will be doing delivery in and around midtown Manhattan of groceries.  It is not the greatest job in the world - and not lost on me that it is the same job I had in High School - but it is steady work in a good company with room to grow.

I just had orientation this past week, and it was actually quite refreshing.  I spent two days learning about food and environmental justice, GMO's, the importance of buying local, eating good healthy foods, etc.  It was not really anything new to me at all, but there were some new tidbits that helped.  For the most part I was answering all the questions in the class and adding stuff to the teacher's discourse.  But for me it was great to get to the end of the day and say hey, they are not saying anything here that I really disagree with.

Yes, they are still a business and still are trying to make money - I will most certainly have my critiques as it goes - but in terms of overall company principles, they are a massive company pushing to have more people eat better healthier food, with less industrial food production, and less capitalist contamination of the food and environmental systems.  Now obviously, in trying to make money of this there still are going to be issues.  But they're whole principle seems to be, the more people we convince to eat more organic, local, healthy foods, and the more people we get to buy in to our corporate image of 'green' and environmentally and social friendly, the more customers we'll have.

They seem to be using a growth model for their business that will mirror the growth of the health food industry in the US.  They are not trying to take customers from similar competitors, but trying to take customers from industrial chemical laden food chains, and get them eating health food.  It is tough for me to argue with that or the logic of it.  I'm sure things will play out that bother me, but on the whole, I believe in what they are trying to do - even if it is just a ploy to make money - the outcome is a better place than we started in.

I did walk through the store quick after and certainly still have some research to do; for example: while they spout on about local local local, my honey from there is from Brazil and India   They are using recyclable this and that, and biodegradable bags and such which usually are made from corn - which drives up food prices in the global south.  Obviously, there is never going to be a perfect company to work for.  It is after all a company... and this one is of course intertwined within the expropriative capitalist system, but still, it seems like a good step for me.  Income from someone that is at least trying (even though the owners politics are appalling).  And they are at least saying good things in terms of labor and how they treat their employees.  Including that there is a lot of room to move up in the company.  They will be tripling their stores over the next ten years - 340 to 1000.  Lots of opportunity there if I wanted it.  So we'll see, I feel ok with it all.  Work itself starts Wednesday.     

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