3 Must-See Food and Ag Documentaries

Dec 4, 2019
a Jersey cow looks at the camera

Perhaps you’ve noticed the multitude of food documentaries available today, all at just the click of a button. Some are buzzy, some sensational, some political in nature – most focus on the “right” way to eat. All are meant to tell a story, but how true is the story being told? Many of these documentaries depict farming and farmers in a very negative light. With less than 2% of the population living and working on farms today, the gap between food producer and food consumer continues to widen. This gap makes way for misperceptions and myths about agriculture and raises legitimate questions from the public about how food is grown and produced and how it gets to the table. 

As health professionals, we’re tasked with guiding patients and clients with facts, not fear. And you’re likely getting questions related to food’s farm-to-table story. We’ve picked three documentaries below – three that we can confidently say do a pretty good job of telling the story of agriculture, food production, farming and sustainability. If they challenge your perspectives and ways of thinking, let us know. We always love a good discussion!
Food Evolution

YouTube, Hulu, Amazon, Facebook 

“Food Evolution” tackles the topics of feeding a growing population safely and sustainably while addressing common fears around genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and food production. The documentary dives into the research of scientists and the lives of farmers – some whose livelihoods have been saved through the use of GMOs. The documentary shows both sides of the controversy and encourages consumers to investigate the science rather than surrendering to fear when it comes to genetically modified foods.

Learn more about a sustainable future and 5 ways dairy farmers practice sustainability each day on the farm.


“Farmland” is a story of triumph and struggle told through the lives of six farmers from across the U.S. – farmers who describe living and working on the farm, experiences most people have not had or even considered when enjoying the food on their table. The film addresses many hot topics as well as varying views on GMOs and organic farming practices. The idea of the film is to give the average person a peek into life on a farm, depict modern farming practices, and help connect people with the farmers who produce their food. Most viewers walk away with a deeper understanding of where their food comes from and a new appreciation for the hardworking farmers behind their food. 

Learn more about dairy’s story of farm to fridge or learn about dairy myths and misconceptions by checking out “The Udder Truth.”

Wasted! The Story of Food Waste

YouTube, Amazon, Wasted! website

This documentary highlights the alarming statistic that approximately 40% of the food in the U.S. is wasted and that, "We don't need to produce more [food], we need to act different." The film showcases the variety of ways each one of us can work toward wasting less and using more of the food that is being produced. At Dairy MAX, we call this honoring the harvest.

Food waste is just one of the many factors to consider in the sustainable nutrition discussion. See how you can reduce food waste this holiday season.

“Food Evolution”, “Farmland” and “Wasted!” are three fact-driven documentaries that show our food system from differing perspectives – perspectives that help enlighten and shape our viewpoints regarding where our food is coming from, where it is going to, and what we can do to help create a more sustainable food system.