Did you know that the Government Is powerless when It comes to recalling tainted meat from the likes of fast food giants? It Is truer While they have the power to recall a set of ill-prepared toys or a bunk line appliances they do not possess to power to recall a batch of meat contaminated with sickening diseases such as, E Coli. You may ask yourself “how is a fact like this is possible? “. In the following pages I will be Informing you about transition from humble beginnings to the monster the fast food industry has grown to in present day.
Firstly I will explain how the decline in minimum wage and introduction of women in the workplace affected the growth of the fast food industry. Secondly, I will relate the boom of car culture to the expansion of these fast food chains. Finally, I will conclude with how a major fast food chain Incorporated the “Speeded” system to revolutionize the entire Industry. The introduction of fast food in the American society has caused a great deal of change, two of those changes were the influx of minimum wages and the increased number of housewives who entered into the workforce.
The steady decline of minimum wage starting In the early ASS, factoring In Inflation, and lasted for roughly 25 years during this time many mothers had to find work to help support monthly income. Industrialization within the fast food kitchens left little to actually be done within them, often an employee’s Job is supervision of the machines. This means that little skill Is require to work at a franchise and companies feel that they should not pay well for a job that requires a large amount of waiting. As stated in the book “The roughly 3. Lion fast food workers are by far the largest group of minimum wage earners… The only Americans who earn lower are migrant farm workers. ” (6). Underpaid, Inexperienced, and easily replaced this demographic of workers have little control of their workplace, they often drift from place to place never climbing the ladder always staying at the bottom rung. As I mentioned earlier minimum wage started to decline in 1973 and did not level out until the ass’s. This lead many women to take up a job, furthermore this left many households without meals prepared eighty.
Closer wrote women entered the workforce In record numbers, driven less by feminist values but by a need to pay the bills. ” and sociologist Macdonald speculated that “The entry of many women into the workforce has increased the demand for traditional housewife The decrease in minimum wage made wives of the nation return to work. This had a great affect on within the homes of the working parents. With the mothers gone at work they had little or no time to prepare meals. Families resorted to eating out or otherwise supplementing a good mom meal with a cheap replacement.
Southern California became an epicenter for change and rapid growth during the time of fast food’s explosive expansion, this was due in part by the new, more affordable automobile. When the car factory opened up in Los Angles it drastically changed the economy. This economic boom incited by car culture opened Southern Californians market drastically. Closer illustrates that a change In residents was the first big change In lifestyle, “… Drawn to California by real estate ads promising a warm climate and a good life. It was the first large-scale migration conducted mainly by car. Los Angles soon became unlike any other city… FIFO more condensed and had more of a variety in residents than most other states. Jobs opened left and right and the city was rapidly changing. “Other cities were being transformed by car ownership, but none were so profoundly altered. By 1940, there were about a million cars in Los Angles, more cars than in forty-one states. “(16). As old ways gave into the new Californians Job market changed to accommodate the car. The fast food industry was no exception, with the booming car culture in place fast food chains began to expand and change themselves, adding drive-thrust for faster service.
Fast food and automobiles were a completely new concepts to us, yet we embraced them and they revolutionized our entire culture from then on. The Speeded system became a staple in all fast food Joints due it’s cost efficiency, speed, and volume of sales produced. Introduced by the McDonald brothers the Speeded system was based off of Ford’s assembly line, it allowed the men to reduced he price of their food, and increase both the time it took to be served and the portions given.
Closer describes how the process starts before the food even arrives at the restaurant. “… Most fast food is delivered to the restaurant already frozen, canned, dehydrated, or freeze-dried. A fast food kitchen is merely the final stage in a vast and highly complex system of mass production. “(7). This revolutionized the fast food industry making it so that individual restaurants could reduce financial loss in spoiled food and it increased the time it took to cook because t was pre prepared.
Another introduction of the system was the staffs division of labor. In the first chapter Closer writes “To fill a typical order, one person grilled, another “dressed” and wrapped it, a third person made the milkshake, another made fries and the last person worked the counter. ” (20). This impacted the time of preparation superbly, and highly resembled the process of the assembly line. As the time of preparation decreased profits from increased sales rendered this system as a success. The fast food industry has definitely been a double edged sword.
It has been a source of growth and expansion, yet it has changed so much of our future while trying to become irremovable. Yes, it expanded Southern California and provided easy means of having a meal, we now have to deal with its consequences. The family meal is now nearly extinct, mothers now work while their children get raised and kept after by a third party and now we do not even want to know what is in the food we order. We all need to consider this book next time we go out for a meal and think about the repercussions of our decisions to eat there.