Sometimes in the airport one sees confiscated goods, actually a small percentage of what gets illegally traded, smuggled, trafficked across international borders. These official educative shows are related to other similar displays such as the Vienna UN City confiscated narcotics showroom or the infamous Chinese anti-corruption exhibitions with the confiscated goods of corrupt state officials.
Viewers and visitors are supposed to just be served a sample, a small part of an immense array of luxury goods, prohibited pleasures and criminal deeds.
Conversely, most of the traffic is actually invisible, it goes on ahead inside ‘black box’ containers, with a tiny, small part of these containers being actually checked and scanned. Most of these containers are spaces of darkness, of mystery, of the unknowable, a sort of occult and opaque core of consumerism and there are no raiders of the lost ark able to figure out which is which, what contains what.
There is still a way to make visible and accessible another kind of corruption mutating freely as soft, hard, crystalline, liquid, syrupy malleable meta-substance – like Timothy Morton’s eco-pervasive hyperobjects – defying detection and identification. With their soluble distribution they sort of become the time&space continuum itself. More exactly we may call sugar a kind of inescapable hypernutrient – such a widely available food substance that exhibits a kind of metaphysical stickiness, sugar coating the entire edible realty. Lets track a bit this big sugar spill.
In fact one can say that searching after something sugar-free is like searching after something outside the logic of late capitalism1. Sugar abuse and its additive and addictive variants (such as high-fructose corn syrup) is growing by the year. Sugar has become the meat of today. If meat is not meat any more, if meat feeds on meat (*farm meat powder proteins is used as animal feed for farm animals) then sugar feeds on sugar2.
In the Sweetness Wars of the 21st century, supersweet apples compete with Dino-sized sodas. In a cannibalistic hunger game, the sweet candy body parts sold at shops today are the very same parts probably suffering from diabetes 2, obesity, heart and tooth decay. While the Big Sugar industry celebrating its PR award-winning campaigns and recruiting fast food giants and paid experts for its soda battles3 seems far from the slave and Atlantic trade4, a sort of nutritional slavery and sugar drowning is still with us today. This is just a bid to bring together the unholy relics of the sugar industry yet here they are, forever replenishing, and seemingly unaltered by legislation, diet scares or health commissions.

1. Gary Taubes and Cristin Kearns Couzens, “Big Sugar’s Sweet Little Lies”, 2012
2. Maddie Oatman, Ten classic ads from the sugar and cereal industries,
3. Azeen Ghorayshi, Too Big to Chug: How Our Sodas Got So Huge,
4. Werner Pieper, Das Zucker-Buch: Süsse Sucht und bittere Folgen, The Grüne Kraft, 2005
text by @TironStefan
exit trough the sweetshop