Maybe I’m losing something in translation, but Xinhua reports that experts in China have called for strengthening moral education to ensure food safety following a string of scandals in recent months.
Zhao Chenggen, an expert at the School of Government at Peking University, said on Wednesday that to promote moral education is conducive to urging food producers to place a higher value on public health.
Under the influence of moral cultivation, food producers could enhance their subjective consciousness to resist ill-gotten gains through adding toxic materials into food, he said.
"Moral decline in the food industry is more terrible than that in social communications," said another expert, Xu Yaotong, a professor of political science at the National School of Administration.
Premier Wen Jiabao said, "A country without the improved quality of its people and the power of morality will never grow into a mighty and respected power.”
Wen said that advancing the moral and cultural construction would help safeguard normal production, life and social order, as well as to eradicate the stain of swindling, corruption and other illegal conduct.
From the reading-too-much–into-the-results-of-a-study category, researchers have found that people are unconsciously fairer and more generous when they are in clean-smelling environments.
The research found a dramatic improvement in ethical behavior with just a few spritzes of citrus-scented Windex.
Katie Liljenquist, assistant professor of organizational leadership at BYU’s Marriott School of Management, is the lead author on the piece in a forthcoming issue of Psychological Science.
The researchers see implications for workplaces, retail stores and other organizations that have relied on traditional surveillance and security measures to enforce rules.
"Companies often employ heavy-handed interventions to regulate conduct, but they can be costly or oppressive," said Liljenquist, whose office smells quite average. "This is a very simple, unobtrusive way to promote ethical behavior."
The study titled "The Smell of Virtue" was unusually simple and conclusive.
Participants engaged in several tasks, the only difference being that some worked in unscented rooms, while others worked in rooms freshly spritzed with Windex.
The first experiment evaluated fairness. As a test of whether clean scents would enhance reciprocity, participants played a classic "trust game." Subjects received $12 of real money (allegedly sent by an anonymous partner in another room). They had to decide how much of it to either keep or return to their partners who had trusted them to divide it fairly. Subjects in clean-scented rooms were less likely to exploit the trust of their partners, returning a significantly higher share of the money.
Maybe it’s time to improve personal hygiene and stock up on the Irish Moss-scented Mennen Speed Stick.
Researchers in Britain have supposedly concluded that people who clean themselves are less judgmental and are more likely to be lenient before making such judgments.
The team at Plymouth University took 22 people who had washed their hands and 22 who had not, and made them watch a disgusting scene from the film ‘Trainspotting,’ about heroin addicts. They were then asked to rate how morally wrong a series of actions were on scale of one to nine, with one being acceptable and seven being wrong.
Lead researcher Dr Simone Schnall said,
"We like to think we arrive at decisions because we deliberate, but incidental things can influence us. This could have implications when voting and when juries make up their minds.”