Food Ecology Flashcards

Thrifty Genotype

The ability to maintain physiological function under conditions of
low caloric intake.

Zoonotic diseases

A zoonotic disease is a disease that can be passed between
animals and humans. Can be caused by viruses, bacteria, parasites,
and fungi. All seem to have arisen in the Neolithic with
the spread of farming. McNeill suggests that many of the plagues
described in the Bible may coincide with the explosion of zoonotic

Type II Diabetes

More complicated and usually occurs in adulthood (although teenagers
and even children are now showing up with this form as well). It is
caused in part by genetic factors but also by significant
environmental effects, particularly diet. In particular, more than 80
percent of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight.

Food Miles

The distance our food travels before we eat it.

Life Cycle Assessment

Full physical cycle. It's a thorough energy evaluation that takes
into consideration as many factors of production and consumption as
can reasonably be measured. Essential to understanding why a food
miles litimus test is an inadequate measure of our food's
environmental impact.

Deep Organic

Generally vows to stay small, place process ahead of profit, avoid
the middleman, market goods directly, and work from the premise that
nature is the best farmer.

Plant Positive

No use of pest control products, whether chemical or organic.
Strengthening the plant

Plant Negatvie

Killing the pest.


The insecticidal protein from Bacillus thuringiensis. It Genetically
modifying these crops to protect themselves better without increasing
external applications of insecticides.


Land that has been tilled. Accumulation in the soil of dangerous
chemicals hat can harm wildlife and if carried away with the topsoil,
damage aquatic ecosystems.


The cultivation of aquatic organisms (as fish or shellfish)
especially for food. Fastest growing method of producing food worldwide.


Referring to the aquatic life accidentally hauled up by marine
trawlers and seines.


the marriage of aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (the
soil-less growing of plants) that grows fish and plants together in
one integrated system. The fish waste provides an organic
food source for the growing plants the plants provide a
natural filter for the water the fish live in.

Pigouian tax

A tax that corrects for the negative side-effects of a market
actiity. Economic tough love.


Local areas where food is grown, processed, and marketed.


the practice of working land by plowing, sowing , and raising
crops on. Agricultural practice that is destructive to the
environment in that it loosens the topsoil and creates the
conditions for erosion and runoff. Tilling soil of manage
weeds dries out the soil and causes chronic erosion, thereby
rendering soil impermanent.

Green Revolution

Commonly held up as the successful counterpart to organic
agriculture's relatively low yields. This agricultural transition,
which started in the mid-1940s and continued through the 1980s,
centered on the technological effort to boost the world's crop
yields in order to feed the booming population. Combination
of plant breeding, chemical inputs, and mechanization.