Grades 7-12, College, Adults
Directed by Alex Gabbay
Produced by tv/e (Television Trust for the Environment)
DVD Purchase $195, Rent $65
US Release Date: 2013
Copyright Date: 2012
DVD ISBN: 1-93777-261-6
Food And Nutrition
Future Food Series|
Big or Small?
What's the best method of growing food for a hungry population of 9.5 billion people: Big, or small?
In the USA alone there are approximately 5 million fewer farmers today than there were in the 1930s. Economies of scale suggests that bigger is better when it comes to feeding a hungry planet. But bigger often requires mechanization and compromise, such as new strains of E. coli bacteria and rising obesity. Often, big also requires growing the same crop varieties.
Many countries are realizing there is a price to "big" that's not factored in at the checkout counter and, as a consequence, a "small farmer" revolution is unfolding in many rich countries including the US. What's the best method of growing food for a hungry population of 9.5 billion people? Big, or small?
Other titles in this series are:
1. Old or New? - In Lima, Peru, a new generation of top chefs are cooking with traditional ingredients and supporting traditional livelihoods.
2. Food or Fuel? - Kenyan farmer Moses Shaha journeys through the Tana Delta, where farmers are starting to grow jatropha, a biofuel crop.
4. Fat or Skinny? - The people of India are faced with a choice: indulge in a Western-style fast food diet, or embrace healthy and indigenous alternatives.
5. Near or Far? - The Nigerian Minister for Agriculture wants to ensure Nigerians eat food grown in Nigeria.
6. Stay or Go? - Who will grow China's food as young people leave the countryside for the cities?
"Big or Small? shows that food policy should concern all of us. By asking the question, 'Can small agriculture feed the world,' a hopeful path begins to emerge. In a world where big agribusiness dominates, it is a relief to see some hard-rock assumptions challenged in a professional and balanced way. This film would be ideal for any class exploring sustainability or environmental policy."
Mary Christina Wood, Professor of Law, Faculty Director of Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program, University of Oregon, Author of Nature's Trust
"Very impressive. These films present current problems in global food production and consumption with unstinting clarity. They highlight figures who advocate for indigenous crops without simply turning back the clock or giving in to the Western model of industrial scale agriculture. They propose models which value the local economy and yet think progressively in ways that will help people deal with rising population and increasingly volatile market for foodstuffs. These are thinkers, activists, politicians and farmers who will shape the future of food around the world."
Ken Albala, Professor of History, University of the Pacific, Author, Beans: A History
"These films put food in a global perspective, pushing the boundaries of discussions about local, artisanal, and organic foods."
Fabio Parasecoli, Associate Professor and Coordinator of Food Studies, The New School, Author, Bite Me! Food in Popular Culture, co-Editor, Cultural History of Food
"All programs are thought-provoking and educational, with a strong emphasis on sustainability, and excellent choices for high school, college, and public library DVD collections."
The Midwest Book Review
"Highly Recommended. This 6-part series is a great collection of educational documentaries packed with interviews, insights, and images. Instructors can't go wrong when using these films in classes! Each documentary is independent of the others, but all share the same theme - exploring local solutions for feeding the world. Seeking both the local and international perspectives, the producers interviewed an impressive variety of recognized leaders and professionals working in the sustainable agriculture and human rights arenas including small-scale farmers, lobbyists, United Nations directors, ethicists, local government officials, authors, activists, and even a Nobel Peace Prize winner. The films are less than 30-minutes long each, which makes them perfect for in-class viewing and discussion. Each film is appropriate for a variety of courses ranging from business to anthropology. Whether purchased as a set or individually the price is a deal."
Kristan Majors, Emory Univesity, Educational Media Reviews Online