Where do the eggs you eat come from? If you answered “the grocery store,” you’re one link short of a food chain. And if you answered “cows,” you’re in the company of some really confused schoolchildren.
A recent survey of more than a thousand eight- to 15-year-olds in Great Britain found that many city kids are confused about the origins of food. For example, two percent of city kids think that eggs come from cows, and bacon from cows or sheep. Eight percent of city kids don’t know that “beef burgers” (as hamburgers are known in Britain) come from cows. Ten percent have no idea where yogurt comes from.
Dairy Farmers of Britain, a company owned and run by 2,750 British dairy farmers, sponsored the survey. The company has launched a campaign to reconnect children with their food.
Increasing urbanization threatens to make people of all ages and nationalities ignorant about where their food comes from. In the U.S., less than one percent of the population now works in the agricultural sector. There are only about two million farms in the U.S. today, compared with 6.8 million in 1935.
Next week’s lesson: Electricity doesn’t come from the wall.—Dawn Stover