Friday, March 30, 2007

Easter Data Collection Task



The third piece of coursework will start after Easter.

Over the Easter holiday it is important that you do some data collection which investigates the issue of SHOPPING or CONSUMPTION PATTERNS to give it its more ‘geographical’ name.

This lesson you will be writing some questions to make up a QUESTIONNAIRE.

You need to include a selection of OPEN and CLOSED questions, and make sure that you have an idea of the SAMPLING method you are going to use to make sure that your SAMPLE is representative of the POPULATION.

Key Terms

CONSUMPTION: ‘buying products and consuming resources’ – something we all do every day

CONSUMPTION PATTERNS: trends which can be identified in the types of things that people buy and where they buy them

SPATIAL CONSEQUENCES: the fact that consumer choices have an impact on places which are far away

CONSUMER LANDSCAPES: the impact of shopping on areas e.g. shopping malls, CBD etc due to traffic

Start by thinking about these questions:

· How do your family do their main ’shop’ ?

· How frequently do you shop ?

· How do your family get their shopping home ?

· Are your family loyal to particular supermarkets ?

· Do your family think consciously about choosing organic, Fairtrade etc. products

· Have there been any recent changes in their ‘patterns of consumption’

You will develop a CLASS QUESTIONNAIRE.

You will be asked to collect some more information over the Easter break.

You need to ask family members the same questions and perhaps think of some other similar questions:

e.g. How has shopping changed over the years ?

Which types of shops have been lost ?

Are these changes for the better ?

You also need to do your own separate research by asking FAMILY MEMBERS and other people you know over the EASTER holidays. Do NOT put yourself at risk and ask people you don’t know, or go knocking on doors, keep it to people you know.

When we return, we will be spending some time looking at the results of the CLASS questionnaires, analysing and presenting the information.

Could you also investigate the issue of WASTE.

We are very wasteful and throw away lots of PACKAGING and FOOD.

Read this article from the Independent:

Britons 'dump one third of food'

By James Watson, PA

Published: 16 March 2007

The average household in Britain throws away almost a third of all the food it buys, a report is expected to reveal today. People throw away a total of 6.7 million tonnes of food a year according to the report by government waste body Wrap. The BBC reports that even though half of the waste is inedible, such as teabags, it still means more than 15p in every £1 spent on food is wasted. The report is expected to focus on climate change and will argue that up to one fifth of our carbon emissions are related to the production, processing, transport and storage of food. Most of the waste food goes into landfill sites, where it breaks down and produces gases that add to the greenhouse effect.

The report is expected to blame the main causes of food wastage on people buying more than they need, keeping food in fridges that are too warm and allowing food to go out of date. Jennie Price, chief executive of Wrap (the Waste and Resources Action Programme), said that as well as wasted money, energy was being squandered on producing and transporting food which was destined for the bin. This meant unnecessary emissions of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, she pointed out. And she said there was a responsibility on supermarkets to help shoppers buy only the amounts of food that they really need.

Ms Price told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: "When you think about the amount of effort and energy - and I mean carbon energy - that goes into food production, this really is a serious issue for everybody, including the supermarkets. "It does feel wrong that there is all that effort that's gone into the production of food - growing it and getting it to you - and then we throw it away. "We are paying for this food that gets thrown away, so if we buy a little less and only what we need, then it helps our pocket as well. "Yes, it's fine to have choice, but let's not waste money and let's not waste all that energy that was expended getting the food to us." A survey of 1,900 consumers for Wrap found that only 10% would admit to throwing away a significant proportion of the food they buy, which suggests that many are unaware of the amount they are wasting, said Ms Price. "If you think 15p or every pound you spend is going right in the bin, it does make you stop and think," she said. "We do it for all sorts of reasons. It's very easy to buy lots of food. We have masses of choice, we like to make sure there's plenty in the fridge and also we just don't see what we throw away."

People could reduce their waste by checking sell-by dates and arranging their meals to ensure they use food up before it goes off, as well as by looking in the fridge and cupboard before going shopping to see what they already have. Talks with supermarkets suggested they were "pretty concerned" about the issue, said Ms Price. But there was more they could do to help consumers avoid waste. "If you want three pork chops, they shouldn't sell you four. If you eat half a bag of salad, you should be able to reseal it and eat the rest next day.

"It's partly about what we can do, but it's also about what we are sold."

Write at least 4 points that you found INTERESTING about the article, and say why you found them interesting.

Visit the weblog at least twice over EASTER: new materials WILL be added regularly for your use.

Remember, we have some tight deadlines once we get back, and we need to get cracking !!

Happy Holidays

Mister Parkinson

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