Great post! And timely for me. I work in higher education in a Mathematics Department. We’ve been seeing our numbers of students majoring or minoring in mathematics slump — more like plummet — over the last 3–4 years and I just spent a year leading a group to study this phenomenon. While I am cautious about making an analogy between higher ed and the food business, there’s certainly a lot about our “product” (programs in Mathematics) that sounds like what you are saying about these food products. Especially the line about fax machines.