A powerful exploration of the use of carcinogenic nitro-additives in the meat millions of people eat every week. The result of more than five years of detailed research, documentary filmmaker Guillaume Coudray's book demonstrates why many in the media are now comparing the processed meat industry with Big Tobacco. The first part of the book explores why nitro-additives came to be used systematically in meat processing.
The second explains why, since the 1950s, meat-packing companies across the West have, it is alleged, repeatedly denied the links between the chemicals used in making bacon and ham, and the onset of bowel cancer - among many other health problems. As Cochonneries (La Decouverte, 2017), the original book led to widespread coverage in France and a hard-hitting documentary on French television. This completely updated English translation is set to have a major impact on the debate in the UK and US and create significant levels of media coverage.
The story it unearths - of the investigations into big business flying in the face of countless scientific health warnings - is one that too few of us have yet heard. 'Reads like a crime novel, in which the processed meat industry is the perpetrator and ordinary consumers are the victims.' Bee Wilson, Guardian, on Cochonneries