Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Scarecrow

I've heard Rain on the Scarecrow by John Mellencamp in the height of the Farm Crisis in the 80's but Chipolte has hired some outfit to take a whole new twist on it in this new YouTube Video.    It may  surpass 2 million views in a very short time(24 hours?) since it was just released.  LuAnn found it in her daily Google marketing links when it had 25,000 views.

What do you think of it?  I think I know most of you think it is a sad disconnect from the way most US farmers farm and what the liberals say they want farming to be.

I think it is so far out there, futuristic and produced in such a way I wonder how some people on this earth really think.  LuAnn shared it in her Marketing Class this week and even the younger local folks attending community college didn't know what to think of it, either.  She said it is a low cost marketing ploy to see if Millenials will help them use it to help their "marketing war" of fresh home grown restaurant food versus the factory farm fast food that has made a few companies billions.  She said it is very notable that Chipotle was started by McDonald's Corporation and spun them off a few years ago.

So why did Chipotle have this video made?

"Way to pull on our heartstrings, Chipotle. We know we should all be making better food choices, but now we're feeling an overwhelming amount of sadness and guilt after watching this new short film.

Today, the burrito chain has announced a new mobile game, titled The Scarecrow, for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The game aims to educate and engage the public about food issues. The above film, which coincides with the game's launch, features Fiona Apple singing "Pure Imagination," originally from "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory."

LuAnn says it's all a big marketing ploy.  She's usually right and this just fits into her new college marketing class.



  1. It's your usual teenager rebelling against their McDonald parents...
    They had a similar animation last year or so, made it to Cannes I think.

    They have a point. I don't think we can ever go back to the "natural" way of farming, the image of happy animals in pastures and yards from our childhood, but animal farmers have been abusing the system or the system has been abusing animal farmers: The use of hormones for meat or dairy has been prohibited in many countries, for instance. That's what the animations refer to when they pump up a chicken or pig shock full of hormones, and that's what really happens, even if the graphics are a bit exaggerated. But hey, it's a commercial to boost sales, not a documentary.

    Maybe they'll have a third installment next year about battery farming conditions, or they'll focus on crop farming, or cooking...

  2. Of course it's just marketing. That little cartoon and the game app. cost some bucks to make and they didn't make them out of the goodness of their corporate heart. I doubt that really big corporations have one.

  3. I would agree that this is a marketing ploy. However, there is a lot of truth to the video. Things like pink slime (ammonium hydroxide treated beef) or bovine somatotropin (growth regulators) or the use of GMOs and the reliance of petrochemicals factor into the truth in this video.

    As a farmer, I know that is impossible to feed the population of this country and the world by growing only organic foods. On the other hand, I grow an organic garden and know the benefits of organic food over commercially grown foods. Taste, nutrient density and overall plant health is quite telling when comparing the home grown versus commercial.

    As a chemical custom applicator, I also see how much chemicals we use to rely on food production. As each year passes, we use more and more. It's no wonder cancer and autism rates continue to go up. I don't know how many times I've been told to apply a herbicide, fungicide or insecticide when it wasn't warranted... it was just "easier".

    This subject is a very complex and personal issue. But food isn't a political football to be played with. Its the lifeblood of our people and of future generations. Tough questions need to be asked and quite frankly, they haven't been asked strenuously enough, IMO. I think this video is a catalyst for people to think about where their food comes from.


  4. Thank you for three excellent comments! As a five year blog writer this makes me very happy! I just want readers to think yet enjoy while I think and enjoy and share. Your sharing here is very important to me.

    As a teacher, I had great impact locally. I never wanted to do harm as I also sought the truth. What is the truth in food today?

    As a farmer, I wanted to produce the highest quality product I could, based on the most sound scientific methods I could find. For me this is non GMO crops fed by healthy soils. Most people wouldn't know non GMO food if they saw it but I bet most farmers could look at three soil pits and tell you which one is in the best condition.

    Reed, IPM and scouting has never failed me unless I didn't do it right or made a wrong conclusion. It is hard work! The market place rarely rewards me for my hard work but it has kind of started to the last few years. Someone thinks well enough somewhere in the world to pay us both $2 a bushel or so premium on our non GMO soybeans. We can do that very well in southwest Ohio.

    This is a very important topic for our times. I am committed to the truth in food but it has been very discouraging the last 20 years.

    I am pleased so many found some good in today's blog.

    Ed Winkle