Austin Frerick: Barons- Money, Power, and the Corruption of America’s Food Industry

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Austin Frerick, an expert on agricultural and antitrust policy, has authored his first book, Barons. In it, Frerick tells the story of seven corporate titans, their rise to power, and the consequences for everyone else. The seven barons he covers include hogs, grains, coffee, dairy, berries, slaughter, and groceries. This eye-opening look into the monopolization of America’s food economy has happened due to decades of deregulation, taking place under both Democratic and Republican administrations. The result has led to a hollowing out of the nation’s rural towns and local businesses. Frerick paints a stark portrait of the consequences of corporate consolidation, but also shows we can choose a different path. A fair, healthy, and prosperous food industry is possible—if we take back power from the barons who have robbed us of it.