IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL
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IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL
Interesting links and articles related to IELTS, ESP, EAP and E-learning.  Available to teach ESP, EAP, Research Skills, IELTS, TOEFL and General English.
Curated by Dot MacKenzie
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‘So God Made A Farmer’ – The Super Bowl Commercial That Left America Speechless

‘So God Made A Farmer’ – The Super Bowl Commercial That Left America Speechless | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it
The Super Bowl is coming up and every year the commercials get a lot of attention. There are plenty of over the top commercials that are talked about, but this simple one is our favorite. There is …
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New Soybean Nitrogen Breakthrough Could Change Food Industry

New Soybean Nitrogen Breakthrough Could Change Food Industry | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it
Worldwide consumption of soybeans amounts to nearly 11 million tons, with almost 75 percent going into feed for livestock. One biologist has designed a way to increase the plant produce, yielding up to 36 percent more seeds.
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NYTimes: The Geography of Food

NYTimes: The Geography of Food | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it
It’s a myth that chips are cheaper than broccoli. They’re not. So what’s stopping people from eating more healthfully?

 

Is junk food really cheaper?  Is that economic factor the only one that has led to increasingly obesity rates in the Unites States?  What about cultural changes to families' division of labor within the house?  Agricultural changes in production as well as urban systems of consumption all play a role in this complex system.  Economics, culture, urban and agriculture are all interconnected in this article.    


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Seth Dixon's comment, September 25, 2011 10:44 PM
For a while now I've been thinking about this issue since I may or may not have had my obesity issue to deal with (okay, I did). People that say "it's society's fault" f...ail to own up to their personal responsibility and fail to recognize that we are "things to act, not things to be acted upon." At the same time, those that pretend that is is 100% about individual choices fail to account for the social context and the structural situations that lead to so many Americans falling into the same unhealthy patterns. That many people means the problem is both structural (a societal issue) and individual. I guess it isn't a surprise that a geographer thinks that the issue is present on multiple scales is it?

As a follow up, you can read a CNN article about economical ways to address healthy living in the poor urban environment. http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/09/15/cnnheroes.keatley.nutrition/
Liam Michelsohn's curator insight, December 4, 2013 2:31 PM

A great article about the food chrsis going on in america. When looking at this fast food trend as a whole its effects extend greatly across the ecnomy. First off the fact that there are 15 fast food resturants to every grochary store is so obsured beacuse studys have proven it cost less to buy food at the store and cook it at home then to eat out at fast food resturants, but who are the poeple eating out at BK the low income familys. Also the fact that such a large amount of food i need to prodce the deamand it has effeced the agrucltual ecnomy beacuse if farmes want to be able to sell there potatos in bulk to these restuansts, they have to  be grown a certain way. So it not just one cheep meal here and there it consistant meals at places like these that has begun to reshape the ecnomy and agruclutral market.

megan b clement's curator insight, December 16, 2013 2:10 AM

The biggest excuse for obese Americans today is that junk food is cheaper than healthy food. This is actually false now that i read this article. They even use the example that if you go to McDonalds for dinner and got burgers, chicken nuggest, fries, and sodas it would cost 28.00. Or you can serve a roasted chicken, vegetables, salad, and milk for 14.00. So there is one example of how that stereotype is false. I understand there are things that you can buy that are healthy that are expensive but that is what comes with everything.

 

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Our Dwindling Food Variety

Our Dwindling Food Variety | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it

"As we've come to depend on a handful of commercial varieties of fruits and vegetables, thousands of heirloom varieties have disappeared. It's hard to know exactly how many have been lost over the past century, but a study conducted in 1983 by the Rural Advancement Foundation International gave a clue to the scope of the problem. It compared USDA listings of seed varieties sold by commercial U.S. seed houses in 1903 with those in the U.S. National Seed Storage Laboratory in 1983. The survey, which included 66 crops, found that about 93 percent of the varieties had gone extinct. More up-to-date studies are needed." 

 

To show the other side of the issue, include this minor, yet crucial part of the article: "A 30-year-old plant pathologist named Norman Borlaug traveled to Mexico in 1944 to help fight a stem rust epidemic that had caused widespread famine. Crossing different wheat varieties from all over the world, he arrived at a rust-resistant, high-yield hybrid that helped India and Pakistan nearly double their wheat production—and saved a billion people from starvation. This so-called green revolution helped introduce modern industrialized agriculture to the developing world." 


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, November 1, 2013 5:23 PM

"As we've come to depend on a handful of commercial varieties of fruits and vegetables, thousands of heirloom varieties have disappeared. It's hard to know exactly how many have been lost over the past century, but a study conducted in 1983 by the Rural Advancement Foundation International gave a clue to the scope of the problem. It compared USDA listings of seed varieties sold by commercial U.S. seed houses in 1903 with those in the U.S. National Seed Storage Laboratory in 1983. The survey, which included 66 crops, found that about 93 percent of the varieties had gone extinct. More up-to-date studies are needed." 

 

To show the other side of the issue, include this minor, yet crucial part of the article: "A 30-year-old plant pathologist named Norman Borlaug traveled to Mexico in 1944 to help fight a stem rust epidemic that had caused widespread famine. Crossing different wheat varieties from all over the world, he arrived at a rust-resistant, high-yield hybrid that helped India and Pakistan nearly double their wheat production—and saved a billion people from starvation. This so-called green revolution helped introduce modern industrialized agriculture to the developing world."

Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, December 16, 2014 9:13 AM

This article is based on a study done by the Rural Advancement Foundation in 1983. Over the past century, it is hard to know what foods were lost and how many of each. But this study done by RAF gave us some information to solve the problem. It compared USDA listings of seed varieties sold by commercial U.S. seed houses in 1903 with those in the U.S. National Seed Storage Laboratory in 1983. The survey, which included 66 crops, found that about 93 percent of the varieties had gone extinct. 93 percent of these crops have gone extinct. That is a huge chunk that could be used as resources. This tree starts off with ten crops on it. The tree included: beet, cabbage, sweet corn, lettuce, muskmelon, peas, radish, squash, cucumbers, and tomatoes. In 1903, all these numbers were up, up, up. The lowest starting with beet at 288 ranging up to the highest with lettuce at 497. However, 80 years later in 1983, numbers dropped. The highest then shifted to tomatoes at 79 and the lowest shifted to sweet corn at 12.

Alex Smiga's curator insight, February 13, 2016 12:18 PM

From a scientific view point it almost seems like we are making ourselves into specialists in an ecological / dietary way.  Limiting our available food resources and hoping against the odds that we don't suffer the same fate as other specialist species of the past.

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Seeds of A Revolution » 21st Century African Land Rush

Seeds of A Revolution » 21st Century African Land Rush | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it

Interesting map about farming land lending to other countries in Africa. Impossible to find the original source, but is attricuted to the Financial Times. 

 

Here is a link to the image (in low res) without political content (UN related): http://new.uneca.org/lpi/africanlandrush.aspx ;

 

Tags: Africa, agriculture, unit 5 agriculture.


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Why Google doesn’t care about hiring top college graduates

Why Google doesn’t care about hiring top college graduates | IELTS, ESP, EAP and CALL | Scoop.it
Google has spent years analyzing who succeeds at the company, which has moved away from a focus on GPAs, brand name schools, and interview brain teasers.   In a conversation with The New York Times' Tom Friedman, Google's head of people operations, Laszlo Bock, detailed what the company looks for. And increasingly, it's not about credentials.{{inline-ad}
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The Global Food Waste Scandal

TED Talks Western countries throw out nearly half of their food, not because it’s inedible -- but because it doesn’t look appealing. Tristram Stuart delves into the shocking data of wasted food, calling for a more responsible use of global resources.

 

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perpective on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates. 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.


Via Seth Dixon, Greenroom Dweller