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Could the recession cure the U.S. obesity problem?

Yes, this sounds cruel, but it really isn't my idea. Leave it up to the managers at Frito-Lay to figure out how to save money, short-change consumers and (inadvertently) introduce a new way to fight U.S. obesity.

The Dallas News reported that Frito-Lay will hike prices and decrease the weight of their snack packages.

The culprit is well known - high prices for commodities such as corn, cooking oil and the fuel to deliver products to retailers.

After reading this story, it occurred to me that the U.S. recession may help cure the U.S. obesity problem if more companies follow Frito-Lay's lead. By protecting the health of the bottom line, Frito-Lay may in fact decrease the size of the nation's waist line.

The actual story here is how cheap food has become over the years. I've heard many noted authors including Marion Nestle and Michael Pollan comment on how cheap food has become in the United States. Perhaps this recession will reset more than all the defaulted subprime mortgages.

Earlier in the week Frito-Lay's parent company Pepsico reported 4.7% growth in quarterly income and 13.4% growth in revenue. At least someone is working to stay fat.


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