Certain foods have always been better than other foods. However, most commonly this statement of greater quality is merely opinion. This opinion can be based off taste, which is probably most common, but it cal also be based off of having a certain mindset.
Mindset as in having preference for a food merely because it is your own people who grow it. For example, Mainers prefer Maine potatoes over Idaho potatoes entirely because they are from Maine, when truthfully, most Mainers would not be able to tell the difference between a Maine and an Idaho potato.
Another difference that may be more acceptable to base quality on is nutrition. You can’t necessarily say that one food is better than another because it has more or less calories, but you can say it is a better choice to choose something with more or less calories.
Quality could also be based off how the food has been preserved. If one slice of cheese is moldy and the other has been perfectly preserved or is fresh, obviously the fresh one is going to be a better slice of cheese, even if they were both exactly the same at one point in time. Well… unless you like eating moldy cheese…. Or, I guess this could have been said about fruit before wine was discovered. But that turned out to be that the spoiled and badly preserved food was better.
You could also say a food is better than another food because of it’s uses. We did this in class a week or so ago when we compared beer to barley. Somebody could still prefer the taste of plain barley over beer… but… that wouldn’t be very smart. Beer has more calories, is more easily stored, is easily divisible, and is a definite sign of wealth.
In conclusion, there is no general way to call one food better than another because there will always be a preference for the other food. However, there are ways to say a certain food is a better choice, like nutrition preservation or usefulness.
Oh, and Maine potatoes will always be better than Idaho potatoes.