THE NEXT FOOD REVOLUTION
In this workshop we will be discussing how the relationship between humans and food has changed dramatically since prehistoric times. In particular we will focus on the consequences of food both for human health as well as the health of the planet. We will discuss the solutions that could begin the next food revolution to create a healthier and sustainable future for our planet.
THE ORIGINS OF FOOD
We are the only species on Earth who has learnt how to use fire. When our ancient hunter-gather ancestors discovered the incredible technology of fire it was a pivotal moment in the history of human evolution. With fire we were not only able to keep warm and scare away predators, but also to cook food for the first time. When we study the spread of human populations we see that coastal societies always developed more quickly, because of the protein found in fish that helped our brains grow so large. This new ability to unlock the nutrients in meat, lead to an explosive growth in human population across the world. Today more people live in cities than anywhere else, often feeling disconnected from nature and the places where their food comes from. Our ancestors lived in harmony with nature, now we increasingly see nature as something separate from ourselves.
THE OBESITY EPIDEMIC
Today we live in a world of extreme unbalance. There are approximately 7.5 billion people on this planet. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) there are over 1 billion people hungry and over 1 billion people suffering from obesity. In fact there are 1.9 billion adults who are overweight and 42 million children under the age of 5 are overweight or obese. Since 1980 worldwide obesity has more than doubled. It causes cardiovascular disease (mainly heart disease and strokes), which was the leading cause of death in 2012. It also causes diabetes, as well as some cancers.
Children living in countries with obesity epidemics are the first generation predicted to live shorter lives than their parents. This is not just a problem in the US. Countries across the developed and developing world such as Britain, Canada, India and Brazil are all facing a similar crisis. Too many people are eating too much food high in sugars, salts and fats, while at the same time living increasingly sedentary lifestyles. We drive cars instead of walking. We sit in offices instead of labouring in the fields. We watch sports on TV instead of playing sports ourselves. Obesity is a big problem for everyone. Even if you are not directly affected by obesity yourself, as a society the cost of healthcare to treat obesity is equally unsustainable. In the US it is estimated that obesity costs the economy $4.3 billion annually in medical expenses and lost productivity. It is important to remember that obesity is a completely preventable disease!
*** THIS IS ONLY THE BEGINNING OF 'THE NEXT FOOD REVOLUTION' WORKSHOP! IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO EXPERIENCE THIS CONVERSATION WORKSHOP IN FULL, WITH A GLASS OF WINE AND A FRIENDLY GROUP OF PEOPLE, THEN PLEASE CONTACT US TO FIND OUT HOW TO PARTICIPATE.
The rest of this workshop will discuss...
- SUPER SIZE ME
- HUMAN HEALTH
- THE PLANET’S HEALTH
- WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT?
- THE NEXT FOOD REVOLUTION
- THE BAD TIMES SCENARIO
- THE VERY UNLIKELY SUSTAINABLE ‘HIPPY’ SCENARIO
- THE SLIGHTLY LESS HIPPY SCIENCE TECH SCENARIO
What do you think will happen in the future with the way we produce and consume food on this planet? Please let us know by leaving a response in the comment section below.
- obesity: (noun) [Portuguese: obesidade] - the condition of being grossly fat or overweight.
- epidemic: (noun) [Portuguese: epidemia] - is the rapid spread of disease to a large number of people in a given population within a short period of time.
- pivotal moment: (adjective) [Portuguese: momento crucial] - of crucial importance in relation to the development or success of something else.
- to scare: (verb) [Portuguese: assustar] - cause great fear or nervousness in; frighten.
- coastal: (adjective) [Portuguese: litoral] - of, relating to, or near a coast.
- stroke: (noun) [Portuguese: derrame] - is when poor blood flow to the brain results in cell death.
- “his weight balloons”: (expression) - his weight increases extremely quickly.
- to plummet: (verb) [Portuguese: cair] - fall or drop straight down at high speed.
- livestock: (noun) [Portuguese: pecuária] - farm animals regarded as an asset.
- by-product: (noun) [Portuguese: subproduto] - is a secondary product derived from a manufacturing process or chemical reaction. It is not the primary product or service being produced.
- slash-and-burn: (adjective) [Portuguese: corte e queima] - is an agricultural technique that involves the cutting and burning of plants in forests or woodlands to create fields. It is subsistence agriculture that typically uses little technology. It is typically key in shifting cultivation agriculture, and in transhumance livestock herding.
- to subsist: (verb) [Portuguese: subsistir] - to maintain or support oneself, especially at a minimal level.
- wildlife: (noun) [Portuguese: animais selvagens] - wild animals collectively; the native fauna (and sometimes flora) of a region.
- desertification: (noun) [Portuguese: desertificação] - is a type of land degradation in which a relatively dry land region becomes increasingly arid, typically losing its bodies of water as well as vegetation and wildlife. It is caused by a variety of factors, such as climate change and human activities.
- vegan: (noun) [Portuguese: vegan] - a person who does not eat or use animal products.
- famine: (noun) [Portuguese: fome] - extreme scarcity of food.
- “It is not rocket science”: (expression) - This expression is generally used to express something that is not very difficult. The challenge of building rockets on the other hand is considered very difficult.
- A hunter-gatherer or forager society: is one in which most or all food is obtained from wild plants and animals, in contrast to agricultural societies, which rely mainly on domesticated species.
- A hippy: (noun) – is a member of a youth subculture (mostly from the middle class) originating in San Francisco in the 1960s; advocated universal love and peace and communes and long hair and soft drugs.
- business-as-usual: an unchanging state of affairs despite difficulties or disturbances.
- “Origins”, 2014 documentary about the origins of life and focusing on our technology can be harmful to our health and environment if left unchecked.
- "World Health Organisation – obesity and overweight fact sheet", June 2016, WHO
- “Cowspiracy – The Sustainability Secret”, 2014 documentary about the impacts of our meat and dairy industries on the environment.
- “Price of Lab-Grown Burger Falls from $325K to $11.36” Natalie Shoemaker, 2013, Big Think
- “Jamie Oliver – The Food Revolution”
- “Teach every child about food”, Jamie Oliver 2010 TED Talk
© COPYRIGHT 2017 JAMES WJ SUTTON & ESTÚDIO447 ENGLISH CLUB
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