Swallow This: Serving Up the Food Industry's Darkest Secrets

  • by Joanna Blythman
  • Narrated by Jessica Ball
  • 8 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

From the author of What to Eat and Shopped, a revelatory investigation into what really goes into the food we eat.
Even with 25 years' experience as a journalist and investigator of the food chain, Joanna Blythman still felt she had unanswered questions about the food we consume every day.
How natural is the process for making a "natural" flavouring? What exactly is modified starch, and why is it an ingredient in so many foods? What is done to pitta bread to make it stay fresh for six months? And why, when you eat a supermarket salad, does the taste linger in your mouth for several hours after?
Swallow This is a fascinating exploration of the food processing industry and its products - not just the more obvious ready meals, chicken nuggets, and tinned soups but the less overtly industrial: washed salads, smoothies, yoghurts, cereal bars, bread, fruit juice, prepared vegetables. Forget illegal, horse-meat-scandal processes. Every step in the production of these is legal but practised by a strange and inaccessible industry, with methods a world away from our idea of domestic food preparation and obscured by technical speak, unintelligible ingredients manuals, and clever labelling practices.
Determined to get to the bottom of the impact the industry has on our food, Joanna Blythman has gained unprecedented access to factories, suppliers, and industry insiders to give an utterly eye-opening account of what we're really swallowing.


What the Critics Say

"Praise for What to Eat: "Joanna Blythman has one of the sanest food heads in the Western World - and this brilliant book encapsulates her admirably clear thinking in a wonderfully accessible, entertaining way. Everyone who cares what they eat and how they feed their family - that's all of us, right? - should read it." (Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall)
"A rare book, practical, sensible, and passionate. Joanna Blythman writes with clarity, sanity and humanity. Anyone interested in food and cooking should read it." (Matthew Fort)
"A succinct and badly needed encyclopaedia of facts and common sense on food and nutrition for which I am truly grateful. The introduction alone is worth the price of the book." (Darina Allen)
"Everyone who cares about what they eat and how they feed their family should read this" (Daily Mail)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


Very good read. It will definitely make me think twice before I buy another ready meal. I will definitely make more food myself.
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- Ania

Will change the way you eat.

This audio book was very informative if a little scary and gross sometimes.
Since starting this book I have change the way I eat. It makes you think twice before eating any food let alone processed food.
Some of the "extra" ingredients lists got a bit long and boring. But highlight what processes most if not all the food we eat "fresh" or not.
A great listen.
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- vincent

Book Details

  • Release Date: 26-02-2015
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Limited