Topic: What is one important aspect of the production or distribution of food in the U.S. that people should understand? Why is it so important—and what can we do about it?
You must narrow the topic to a specific thesis: a stand you will take on a debate regarding a problem in American food production. Remember that your thesis is a statement. You will use APA documentation for this essay, but the requirements for MLA and APA are the same in this regard: see the Handbook, pages 175–77.
Here are some possible questions to address. You may come up with others on your own.
1) What is one specific thing that ordinary people can do to make a difference in terms of a specific problem in food production or distribution? (Consider CSAs [Community Supported Agriculture groups] or the availability, cost, and importance of organic foods, as examples.) What exactly is the problem, how does our behavior affect it, and why would taking specific action help? Why should we be concerned?
2) Most people in the United States live in areas far from where food is produced. Is there a problem with that distance from where our food comes from—and if so, is there anything that can be done to address the problem? Does any solution have to come from the government (“top down”) or can citizens work toward a solution on their own (“bottom up”)? Can citizens affect government decisions about food production?
3) One of the populations most negatively affected by current food production and distribution systems is the urban poor. People with limited incomes living in urban areas often have no access to healthy foods—or cannot afford those foods. Are there any innovative and practical solutions to that social problem? What are they, and what would have to happen in order for them to work?