Category Agriculture

Rod at Dawn

In 1994 popstar Rod Stewart gave a concert on Copacabana beach in Rio di Janeiro. And it turned out to be a legendary concert as it attracted the largest crowd of people in history for a musical event. 4 to 5 million people came to listen to Rod. And that’s an interesting number, because it […]

Japanese Miniatures: Akakomugi

Japan is the conceptual epicentre of shrink philosophy. Our ongoing series of Japanese Miniatures collects and connects these stories and hopefully eventually will be able to inspire some of the fundamental Japanese sensitivity and desire towards smallness in the rest of the world. Akakomugi, an old dwarf variety of wheat, is yet another perfect illustration […]

Micro-Livestock: A Possible Future

Although animal science has traditionally emphasized bigness, the 1991 report Micro-Livestock: Little-Known Animals with a Promising Economic Future shows that smallness has many advantages. If in the future the human species will become smaller, we will benefit from most of the advantages listed below. Small animals are cheaper and give faster return on investment since they […]

The Fear of the Gods

In one of his lesser known stories, The Food of the Gods and how it came to Earth, the British writer H.G. Wells presents Herakleophorbia IV, a nutrient that makes anything grow to about 6x its regular size. The story takes the reader, rather uninspired, through the regular motions of such a plot. Careless scientists, terrifying […]

Abundance Fantasies: Spherical Soup

The Disproportionate Restaurant investigates how downsizing the human species will affect our relationship with food. Over the past years we did a number of experiments, including abundance fantasies such as the Ostrich BBQ and Sunflower Table and explorations of new ingredients and possibilities such as the Somatostatin Zebrafish and Guinea Pig Farm. But it is […]

Abundance Fantasies: Exaggeration Cards

Exaggeration cards are picture postcards depicting enormously oversized fruits, vegetables and livestock. First appearing in Fresno in 1905 the cards quickly struck a chord throughout the western United States. These  “tall-tale postcards”  became especially prevalent in small town rural communities hoping to forge an identity for themselves as places of agrarian abundance. The cards were surprisingly […]

Micro-Livestock: Guinea Pig

The 1991 OFA report ‘Microlivestock: Little-known Small Animals with a Promising Economic Future’ introduces several alternative small animals for domestication and meat and dairy production. Small animals are easier to breed and keep, and are a quick way of supplementing a diet, especially in less developed countries. One of the species of great interest to […]

One Bean Coffee

According to the Water Footprint Network the fresh water involved in the production of a single cup of coffee (125ml) is 140 liters. One part of coffee consumes 1100 water parts. To make an average cup of coffee requires around 40 coffeebeans. To produce one bean requires 3,5 liters of water. In total the global […]

Deflating the Food Bubble

The era of world food security is coming to an end simply because we can’t sustain the way food is produced. Lester Brown, president of the Earth Policy Research Centre in Washington, says the demands for food are growing so fast that unless we deflate the food bubble at wartime speed, a breakdown is inevitable. The inability […]

Abundance Fantasies: Corn Cult

Mexican protesters against the high tortilla prices in 2007 rallied around an oversized corn. Their public display of the desire for an abundant food supply ressembles cargo cults in which the visualisation of desired abundance, or the context in which the abundance is believed to exist, is reproduced in order to attain it. But obviously they don’t. […]