Friday, November 18, 2011

Lesson in Productivity...More food with fewer workers...Should we be OUTRAGED that employment in agriculture has declined so much??

Productivity (Output per worker) down on the farm is amazing.  The first graph shows the yield per acre of various agricultural commodities relative to the growth of the US population.  Food production per capita has increased dramatically post-Depression Era. 
Source: Coyote Blog
This second graph shows productivity in agriculture has been achieved with fewer workers. Notice in both graphs 1930 to 1940 was a seminal year---a dramtic divergence in the production of food and the number of workers needed to produce that food.
Source: NASS

Why is this?...

Source: HERE: ""The use of technology in modern agriculture began with the replacement of the horse with modern tractors, combines, and cotton pickers after the turn of the 20th
century. The nextrevolution in crop production began in the 1930s with “hybridization” of crops, or the breeding of

select crops to produce desirable characteristics not typically found in the original crop. As a

result, crop yields have increased from 25 bushels per acre in 1930 to more than 140 bushels

today. During the 1940s came increased availability of fertilizers to further increase crop yields,

and in the 1950s we saw the introduction of herbicides, insecticides, and fungicides to help

control weeds, insects and diseases that can reduce crop growth. In the mid 1990s, the

introduction of food biotechnology helped to increase the quantity and quality of the foods we

grow by making them tolerant of pesticides and preserving nutrients and other desirable traits. As

with other industries, farmers have had much to gain from the availability of computers, software,

satellites, and the Internet. Such technologies enable farmers to practice what is often referred to

as “precision agriculture,” which gives them the ability to more effectively use crop inputs such

as fertilizers, pesticides, tilled or cultivated land, and irrigation water. More effective use of these

inputs means greater crop yield and/or quality, without polluting the environment. Additionally,

since 1930, the time necessary to produce a bushel of corn has decreased from more than 30

minutes to a fraction of a minute in 2002."""

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Nice chart showing the difference in gasoline prices between the US and Europe...Why the big difference???

Here is a chart showing the differences in the price of gasoline between the US and Europe at-large.  Why is there such a large disparity between the two continents?
Source: Business Insider

Much of the difference comes from the level of taxation on gasoline. Here are a few examples of countries shown above and the dollar amount in taxes levied on a gallon of gasoline.

Belgium $4.26

France $4.12

Germany $4.37

Italy $3.95

Japan $2.81

Netherlands $4.79

United Kingdom $4.47

United States $.39 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

"So, how did you make your millions? I invented the "OBOL". REALLY? YOU are THAT guy!!"

The above is a conversation I WISH I was able to have. How many times have you had a great idea?  What is the difference between me and the inventor of the Obol?  Follow-through....

From Brookstone:

Hate soggy cereal? Problem solved! Obol® has two sections--an upper area for your cereal, and a lower reservoir for milk. Scoop a spoonful of your cereal into your spoon, then swoop into the milk for the perfect bite every time. Obol® is also great for milk and cookies, soup and crackers, even chips and salsa. Its uses are as unlimited as your imagination!

Obol's unique Swoop n Scoop® design lets you enjoy cereal or anything crispy until the last bite.
And with its easy-to-hold, textured non-slip grip and rim, you can eat wherever you like--in bed or while watching a movie. Kids love Obol®! And moms will, too. It's made in the USA from BPA-free, unbreakable polypropylene--and it's dishwasher-safe.

Enjoy bite after crispy bite with Obol, the Never Soggy Cereal Bowl. Order from Brookstone today!

Source HERE via KPC
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