l'âge agro-industriel 19th century Today

Lunch of a child in a Fast-food outlet
Lunch of a child in a
"Fast-food" outlet

The advent of
mass consumption society

The wages paid for two hours of work by an unskilled laborer in the 18th century was enough to buy one kilo of cereals (food grains). Nowadays, it takes only five minute of work! This extraordinary evolution of the « real price » of cereals explains the development of the mass consumption society.

Cheese stall in a hypermarket

This social change is the result of scientific development, of a New agriculture (def.), of an increase in yields, of the contribution of industrial processes to food production, of international exchange, of progress in food distribution, and of an increase in purchasing power (def.) (accelerated by social struggles).

Nevertheless, mass consumption (def.) means neither equality in food consumption nor satisfactory nutrition...It means only a larger number of people getting access to the main food trade markets... «  Hypermarkets are the cathedrals of the consumption society ». Mass consumption is a privilege of rich societies. ...The « Banquet of Mankind »  is not egalitarian....

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