In this course, we explore the development of our modern food production and distribution system and its effects on our environment and planet. We critically review published studies and other assessments that evaluate the environmental and social impact of food-related products and processes. We cover such topics as agricultural and food policy, industrialization and factory farming, the interrelationship between climate change and food production, water quality and scarcity, the role of technology in food production, and other relevant topics. We apply life cycle assessment concepts, appropriate sustainability criteria, and benchmarking to current questions surrounding our global food system, and incorporate observations from the developed and developing world. The course emphasizes the methodologies and skills needed to critically assess the sustainability of various food products and practices.
Harvard Extension School
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