Grocery: The Buying and Selling of Food in America (Hardcover)

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A good sociology book makes you rethink the way you interact with the world, and Grocery does just that. Ruhlman takes something seemingly mundane and delves deep into it, exploring it through anthropological, economic, and nutritional lenses. Sprinkled with anecdotes from his own life and using the Ohio-based chain Heinen’s as an excellent example, this book teaches you more about grocery stores than you ever thought you needed to know - but the next time you go grocery shopping, you’ll be glad you do.

— Rebecca


In Grocery, bestselling author Michael Ruhlman offers incisive commentary on America's relationship with its food and investigates the overlooked source of so much of it--the grocery store.

In a culture obsessed with food--how it looks, what it tastes like, where it comes from, what is good for us--there are often more questions than answers. Ruhlman proposes that the best practices for consuming wisely could be hiding in plain sight--in the aisles of your local supermarket. Using the human story of the family-run Midwestern chain Heinen's as an anchor to this journalistic narrative, he dives into the mysterious world of supermarkets and the ways in which we produce, consume, and distribute food. Grocery examines how rapidly supermarkets--and our food and culture--have changed since the days of your friendly neighborhood grocer. But rather than waxing nostalgic for the age of mom-and-pop shops, Ruhlman seeks to understand how our food needs have shifted since the mid-twentieth century, and how these needs mirror our cultural ones.

A mix of reportage and rant, personal history and social commentary, Grocery is a landmark book from one of our most insightful food writers.

About the Author

Michael Ruhlman has collaborated on several bestselling cookbooks, including The French Laundry Cookbook, Bouchon, and Alinea. He is the author of critically acclaimed books including The Soul of a Chef, The Elements of Cooking, Ratio, and Ruhlman's Twenty. Ruhlman has written about food and cooking for the New York Times, Gourmet, Food Arts, and other publications. He lives in New York City.

Coverage from NPR

Product Details
ISBN: 9781419723865
ISBN-10: 1419723863
Publisher: Abrams Press
Publication Date: April 18th, 2017
Pages: 320
Language: English