Impacts of a Border-less Society
Humans live in a world where geographic boundaries cease to exist when it comes to goods, services, and even food. Most people think nothing of having freshly squeezed orange juice or kiwis for breakfast, even those who live in New York City with 10-inches of snow on the ground in the middle of January. In this age and time everything and anything is available for consumption year-round at the local grocery store. Although it may be an “unintended consequence,” these conveniences can come with potentially major ecological and economic impacts that are both positive and negative. For example, the coffee you drink may come from beans imported from Columbia, the sugar you use may come from India, or the steaks you sear on the grill may have come from Argentina. How much fuel was spent transporting these products across the ocean? Were any pesticides used? If so, was it done in a sustainable fashion? Were forests cleared to make room for grazing herds or larger agricultural fields? These are just a few of the many questions that should be considered when making selections at the grocery store.
Explore the following resources in the Kaplan Library, along with the link from the United States Department of Agriculture, to learn more about the foods humans rely on and the variety of ways in which these foods can be acquired.
Roosevelt, M. (2006). The lure of the 100-mile diet. Time, 167(24), 78.
Cosier, S. (2007). The 100-mile diet. E: The Environmental Magazine, 18(5), 42.
Cooper, C. (2007). 100 miles and counting. Food In Canada, 67(3), 7.
Macpherson, C. (2007). You are where you eat. Ascent Magazine,(33), 46.
Source: United States Department of Agriculture. (2012). The people’s garden. Retrieved
For this Assignment, you will write an essay in which you analyze a meal provided to you by your instructor in the weekly course announcements. Address the following questions as you write your Assignment.
- If you were to purchase each item at a local chain grocery store, where would these items be sourced? For example, where were the fruits, vegetables grown, and/or meats raised immediately prior to sale? Do not discuss the history or origin of the item (i.e., corn or maize originated in Mexico around 2500 BC.)
- Discuss the events and methods of production that allowed your local grocery store to carry these items. What farming methods were likely used to grow these items, and how do these methods impact the environment around the farms, as well as the employees who work within these establishments?
- Were the items grown and shipped in from another country?
- What types of processing and packaging must take place in order for you to be able to purchase the product?
- If you were to follow the suggestions shared within the articles provided above, where could you purchase the items (name specific local places within your community)? If a food item is not available locally, is there an alternative that you could use as a substitute?
- Discuss the ecological and economic advantages and disadvantages of purchasing food items that are locally sourced versus those shipped from other areas of the country and from around the world. Use your assigned Reading for this unit, as well as supplemental sources, to explore the impacts our food purchases may have on the environment and economy and how these choices influence multiculturalism and diversity around the globe.
- The food choices people make have the potential to generate both local and global impacts and potentially serve as solutions to some of the challenges discussed so far. This concept can be summarized in the phrase “Think Globally, Act Locally.” Discuss how you would interpret this phrase based upon your analysis of the meal provided by your instructor for this Assignment. Discuss how your individual actions can serve as a possible solution through the choices you make when planning and buying meals might change in the future, and how your choices, when combined with those of others, can have a global impact.
This essay should be a minimum of 1,000-words in APA style format. Provide appropriate citations and references for any information you use in this paper. Your paper should include a minimum of five sources. These can include those provided within the project directions and the course materials. Be sure to avoid copying and pasting large sections of text from any given source. For help with citations, refer to the APA Quick Reference.
For additional writing help, visit the Kaplan University Writing Center and review the guidelines for research, citation and plagiarism:
Kaplan Writing Center. (2012). Research, citation, and plagiarism.Kaplan University. Retrieved
Be sure your essay analysis is clearly written, uses correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling, and that the writing is well ordered, logical, unified, as well as original and insightful.