Monday 26 May 2008

Carry on golfing

This i love. As Raul starts to open up Cuba and encourage golf tourism some wild snaps from a game back in 1962 between Che and Fidel. Che apparently won after a battle as long as one of Fidels speeches. Not a Pringle sweater in sight

Wednesday 21 May 2008

The day after tomorrow

the latest (19th May) issue of Newsweek (available fulltext thru the library) has a special report devoted to the growing crisis in the world food markets. Increasingly this topic is starting to make it's way on to the front of the news media and cannot be ignored as mere scaremongering. Contributors include Gordon Brown and the author Michael Pollan. In the past few months there have been food related riots in 22 countries, food prices are rising rapidly, the days of cheap food are over, many food markets are distorted by both the rich and poor, the industry is corrupted by subsidies and scams, huge amounts of waste.... governments will fall.
The food industry has so far shieded consumers in the west from the worst of it but already the average food bill has increased by 1/3 in the past year. Grain prices have doubled but insanely most of the worlds grain is fed to animals - 10lbs of grain produce 1lb of meal. And there's more madness: in the USA, by encouraging farmers to plant corn, to produce ethanol, to run cars, now means the 4 wheel SUVs on the road are competing with the poorest in our society to feed themselves. Thats not just wrong it's obscene.

Monday 19 May 2008

Irish Lifestyles. End of an era?

The new Mintel Irish Lifestyles report is all over the media today, Irish Times and Indo, Morning Ireland, etc. It explores in great detail our concerns and worries, our attitudes to ethics, the environment, the economy, to immigration, to new technology. What are we spending our money on? our time doing? our thoughts thinking? Its a thorought insight and snapshot of the Irish today. And of course the full report is available electronically in the library

Saturday 17 May 2008

tourism stats Good news or bad?

CSO tourism statistics were released last week. We had 8mill visitors to Ireland in 2007 who spend a total of 4.9bill euros. Pretty good BUT on the flip side we made 7.7mill trips out of ireland (I contributed 3) spending 6.1bill euros - how they work that figure out i do not know. So by my calculations the tourist industry last year cost our country 1.2bill? Minister Cullen of Arts, Sport and Tourism was unavailable for comment

Friday 2 May 2008

molecular gastronomy - appliance of science

bit of a coup next week for the dit school of culinary arts & food technology who host a seminar on Molecular Gastronomy: "The latest developments between the kitchen and the laboratory". Among the speakers are Joana Moura from University of Lisbon and Dr. Herve This, chemist and chef, who is probably the most influencial figure, in this area and author of 2 major books on the subject both of which are of course in the library The seminar is in Cathal Brugha St. next wed, 7th May starting at 2pm.
Probably the best known exponent of this culinary equivalent of method acting is Heston Blumenthel (library here) who runs the 3*** Michelin restaurant The Fat Duck where the DIT have been lucky enought to have placement students for the past 3 years