The business model of the food industry, as it stands today, is unsustainable. To counter these negative trends, organizations like Slow Food International have begun to champion the importance of “quality” for health, the environment, and the art of gastronomy. But what does quality mean and what will be its impact on the global food industry? An analysis of wines produced in France and labeled with the government-sponsored quality certification system, Appelation d’Origine Contrôlée
, reveals that an emphasis on quality and geography, rather than brand, makes the food market more monopolistically competitive, more inclusive yet hierarchical.