F&ES 727a / 2016-2017

The Future of Food

Credits: 3
Fall 2016: W, 1:00-3:50, Kroon 319
 
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This seminar explores significant challenges posed by the global food supply to environmental quality and human health. The primary obligation is a research paper, dissertation chapter, master’s project, or senior essay draft. We read critically 150–200 pages per week, and students should be prepared to discuss or present analyses. Challenges examined include fresh vs. processed foods, nutritional sufficiency and excess, radionuclides, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, fertilizers, animal feeds, plastics, flame retardants, flavors, fragrances, ingredient fraud, genetic modification, waste, energy input and yield, locality, processing technologies, packaging, and carbon emissions. Corporate case histories are considered in a number of sessions. Private innovations in the production and management of food are analyzed, including trends in certification and labeling initiatives. Most sessions examine one or several foods. Examples include cow’s milk, human milk, infant formula, grapes, wine, corn, bananas, tomatoes, salmon, cod, tuna, sodas, fruit juice, water, coffee, and olive oil.
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