Mind, society, and behavior: Can banking inform food safety?

According to the World Bank, every policy relies on explicit or implicit assumptions about how people make choices. Those assumptions typically rest on an idealized model of how people think, rather than an understanding of how everyday thinking actually works.

o.brother.dumbThis year’s World Development Report argues that a more realistic account of decision-making and behavior will make development policy more effective.

 The Report emphasizes what it calls ‘the three marks of everyday thinking.’ In everyday thinking, people use intuition much more than careful analysis. They employ concepts and tools that prior experience in their cultural world has made familiar. And social emotions and social norms motivate much of what they do. These insights together explain the extraordinary persistence of some social practices, and rapid change in others.

The report shows that small changes in context have large effects on behavior. As a result, discovering which interventions are most effective, and with which contexts and populations, inherently requires an experimental approach. Rigor is needed for testing the processes for delivering interventions, not just the products that are delivered.

Full report available at: https://openknowledge.worldbank.org/handle/10986/20597

Does more money mean safer food? World Bank funds food safety in China

If China already owns everything why does China need $100 million from the World Bank to pump up their food safety efforts?

According to a World Bank fluff press release, the Government of China has made food safety a top priority in recent years and is taking clear actions to upgrade their food safety system. The Jilin Agricultural Product Quality and Safety Project is part of the national efforts to upgrade food safety infrastructure, procedures and enforcement capacity to implement these new national laws.

Jilin Province in northeast China is a major agricultural producer and supplier of agricultural products to other parts of China. The project aims to help Jilin Province improve its agricultural product quality and reduce agricultural product safety risks. This will be achieved through introducing good agricultural practices, improving the implementation of agricultural product safety related regulations, and strengthening the agricultural product safety monitoring system.

$100-hundred million for test the water, don’t add shit to the soil and wash the shit off hands? That’s GAPs. Oh, and apparently use plant and animal drugs as intended.

All the best plans and guidelines don’t mean anyone will actually follow them in the field. That gets to food safety culture. And I’m not sure it can be bought.