My Apple is part of a Global System?

CLP date: 1/21/2011

Check in question of the day: What vegetable or Fruit do you dislike the most and why?

The most common answer was brocoli, because it does not taste good.

In order to understand the global food system, today we read Big ideas in development, Fair miles; recharting the food miles map (http://pubs.iied.org/pdfs/15516IIED.pdf).  The publication discussed food as a social, political, and economic issue.  It awarded us the opportunity to go beyond food as an environmental and nutrition issue.  We learned that food travels on average  5120 miles to get to our plates.   The publication focussed on the UK which receives most of their produce from Africa.   Living in California we are spoiled, California is the largest grower of produce in the United States.    In California we have the choice  to buy local and organic all year round.  However in places like the UK must import their produce from other areas.  This becomes a social justice issue, are we able to tell other people they can’t eat certain foods because it has a larger carbon footprint?

We choose to discuss this question… the immediate answer was “No”.  We are not able to tell people that they can’t enjoy the same products we do.   However some of the students felt that they should be aware of their carbon footprint.  The question then became how do we educate people on Food Miles.  Well they can start by reading the publication and then educating students in schools.  This lead us to a discussion about environmental education in Schools, which we decided to place in the bike parking lot to discuss another day.  For now we understood thay our apple is part of a global system.