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Human Nutrition chapter 12 - Consumerism from Farm to Table
Terms in this set (33)
How do advertising and marketing influence your food choices?
-As food consumers, we have influence over food industry, but advertising and marketing control many of our choices
-Food companies spend more than $10 billion annually to promote their products
-Much promotion for nutritionally dubious products
-Advertising for fruits and vegetables almost nonexistent
-College-aged and young adults are increasingly targets of advertisers
Where does your food come from?
-Much of your food comes from small, family-run American farms
-Just over 2 million farms (2,204,792), most in Midwest, Great Plains, California
-Fewer than 1 million American farmers produce food for population of 300 million
What do you need to be a farm in the United States?
To be a farm in the United States, must produce and sell at least $1,000 of agricultural products/year
What are the challenges of farming?
-Demand for low food prices
-Dependence on nature's cooperation
How does technology aid farmers?
Internet allows for precision agriculture
How does the government aid farmers?
Government subsidies for commodity crops
What is agribusiness?
-The blending of agricultural and business entities that affect how food, clothes, home goods are developed, processed, distributed, and purchased
-Food portion includes food production, agricultural chemicals, finance and trade, management, environmental considerations, land development
-Agriculture sector employs about 5% of the U.S. population
-Food processing companies comprise large share
What are the top three food crops in United States?
-Corn: 10 billion bushels from >400,000 farms in Corn Belt (world's largest corn producer)
-Soybeans: 50 percent of world's soybeans from >290,000 U.S. farms
-Wheat: 10 percent of world's wheat from >160,000 farms in Great Plains
-Most staple crops used for animal feed, not humans
Dominant food animals in United States
Exporting foods: the good and bad news
-U.S. farmers help feed world
-Estimated 30 percent of farm income from foreign trade
-Also exporting unhealthy eating habits
-Shift to high-calorie, high-fat diet
-Globesity becoming a global threat
growing incidence of obesity worldwide
Food production outside the United States
-Around 17 percent of food in United States is imported
-Most fish and shellfish
-About 39 percent of the fruit and nuts
-$2 billion worth of bananas annually
-In past few decades, vegetable imports have doubled; fruits, juices, nuts up by 20 percent
-Most coffee comes from Colombia and Brazil
Importing foods: the good and bad news
-Two primary reasons for U.S. food imports:
1. Demand for variety of products year round
2. Demand for cheap food
1. Environmental costs of long-distance shipping
2. Potential for food contamination overseas
How does food production impact the environment?
-Food production requires the use of internal and external resources
-Natural resources are used "internally" to produce food and "externally" to transport food to consumer
-External costs include carbon emissions (greenhouse gases) and climate change
-Transport costs raise food prices
-Food may travel 1,500 miles or more
-12 percent of food dollars go to transport
How is locally grown food different?
-Locally grown food requires fewer external resources
-Locavore movement based on:
1. Financial, environmental costs of transport
2. Idea that locally produced food tastes better
-Small farms supply foods in different ways:
1. Community-supported agriculture
2. Farmers markets
3. Grocery stores
-Local food system may not be a sustainable system
Growing vegetables in a container
-Almost anyone can be a home gardener
1. Container: ceramic pot, planter box, or other
2. Potting mixture: soil mix
3. Plant: various vegetables
4. Fertilizing: enrich soil with powdered fertilizer
5. Watering: avoid under- or overwatering
6. Harvesting: timing depends on plant type
What is a sustainable food system?
-Sustainable food system is one that:
1. Satisfies human food needs
2. Enhances environmental quality and resources
3. Makes most efficient use of nonrenewable resources
4. Sustains economic viability of farmers
5. Enhances quality of life for farmers and society
-Many food systems degrade environment, reduce biodiversity, pollute air and water
Sustainable food systems concerns about...
-Soil use: improper use degrades topsoil, endangers food soil web
-Energy use: fossil fuels harm environment; using alternatives aids sustainability
-Water use: growing consumption; conservation is necessary
-Being a more sustainable food consumer: adopting "greener" habits can help (example: eating less meat)
What are the benefits and risks of using hormones in food production?
-In cows, bovine growth hormone and its synthetic version, recombinant bovine somatotropin (rbST), stimulate milk production
-FDA has found no negative effects, but some consumer groups question safety
What are the benefits and risks of using antibiotics in food production?
-Used in animals to:
1. Treat and prevent illness
2. Promote growth by keeping animal healthy
-Risk: growth of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, posing threat to humans when consumed
-Government agencies try to prevent overuse
What are the benefits and risks of using pesticides in food production?
-Control pests that threaten food supply
-Types of pesticides:
1. Herbicides: kill weeds
2. Antimicrobials: kill microorganisms (bacteria, viruses)
3. Fungicides: kill fungi (mold)
4. Biopesticides: derived from natural materials; include sex pheromones
5. Organophosphates: affect nervous system of pests
-Risks and regulation of pesticides:
1. Can cause harm to animals, environment, humans
2. Use is heavily regulated in United States
3. Risk assessment (by EPA) is process to determine potential human health risks posed by exposure
-Alternatives to pesticides: integrated pest management uses methods to control pests but limit harmful impact on humans, environment
(examples: crop rotation, pest-resistant crops, biopesticides, natural predators)
How can you reduce pesticides in food?
1. Wash: thoroughly wash and scrub all fresh fruits and vegetables with a vegetable brush with sturdy surfaces under running water to dislodge bacteria and some of the pesticide residue. Running water is more effective than soaking the fruit or vegetable.
2. Peel and trim: peeling fruits and vegetables and tossing outer leaves of leafy vegetables helps reduce pesticides. Trimming the visible fat from meal and the fatty skin from poultry and fish helps reduce some of the pesticide residue that remains in the fatty tissue of the animal.
3. Eat a variety of foods: eating a variety reduces your chances of being overexposed to any particular pesticide.
The application of biological techniques to living cells, which alters their genetic makeup
A type of biotechnology in which two plants are crossbred to produce offspring with desired traits from both
A cell that has had its genetic makeup altered
Genetic engineering (GE)
The biological technique that isolates and manipulates the genes of organisms to produce a targeted, modified product
Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)
-Organisms genetically engineered to contain both original and foreign genes
-First GMO crops grown in early 1990s, designed to reduce pesticide, herbicide use; later versions added nutrients, improved shelf life
-Proponents believe GMOs are good for environment and food supply
Plant breeding versus genetic engineering
-Traditional plant breeding involved crossing two plants of the same species to produce DNA with more desirable traits . The process was imprecise, however, and achieving the desired result could take years.
-Today, genetic engineering allows scientists to precisely manipulate and impart desirable qualities from one plant to its offspring much ore quickly.
What are the risks and benefits of using biotechnology in agriculture?
-Concerns and regulations associated with GE foods
-Opponents fear creation of "frankenfoods," but industry is tightly regulated by FDA, USDA, EPA
-Many unanswered questions, including:
1. Effects on natural environment, ecological balance
2. Production of plant toxins
3. Introduction of new allergens into food
4. Changes in nutrient content
5. Unsafe animal feed
How can food policy affect the foods available to you to buy and consume?
-Various government agencies regulate the food industry and set food and nutrition policy
-Food policy can help encourage food producers to create healthier products (example: Dietary Guidelines for Americans caused shift toward whole grains, improved diet)
-Food policy can lead to relabeling and reformulating without providing a healthier food product
(example: Food producers replaced trans fat with saturated fat, with no net positive effect)
What are the politics of the food industry?
-Government programs are food consumers
-Federal government is nation's biggest food consumer
(examples: National School Lunch Program, Summer Food Service Program, Emergency Food Assistance Program, Child and Adult Care Food Program)
-Food lobbyists exert influence
(example: 2009 push to tax sugared beverages was blocked in Congress)
How do you know how foods were produced?
-Label terms provide information about how foods were produced
-USDA defines labeling for animal food products
-Prepackaged meat products:
2. Fresh poultry
3. Free range
6. No hormones
7. No antibiotics
The meaning of organic food
-Market for organics foods has grown rapidly
-USDA developed National Organic Standards (NOS)
-Organic farming means grown without some synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, bioengineering, irradiation
(some pesticides may be used)
-No evidence that organic foods are nutritionally superior, but some clear advantages:
1. Likely to have fewer pesticides, antibiotics
2. Organic farming can help environment
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