Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Conspicuous consumption

As a fan of the humble sandwich, I thoroughly enjoyed Sam Knight's superb Long Read piece for the Guardian. The concept of putting some kind of filling between two slices of bread seems simplistic, but his article is rich with detail: on the sandwich's history; on the extraordinary rise of the pre-packaged sarnie (a trend that, incredibly, was only kicked off by M&S in 1980); on the state of the industry today (the enormous scale, the technology, the R&D, the jargon, the fierce rivalry); on how the sandwich's popularity is both a symptom of and a catalyst for modern on-the-go, cash-rich and time-poor lifestyles; on the potential impact of Brexit on an industry that relies heavily on immigrant workers; and on the future, which, if the likes of Greggs have their way, might see the sandwich conquer the "evening day part" as well as lunch and breakfast.

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