Food and the Future Environment

Module 4.1: Water Resources and Food Production


Module 4.1: Water Resources and Food Production


How much water do you eat? Water is essential for food production. In this unit, you will learn about water as an essential ingredient to grow the food that we eat, including plants and animal products. The concepts of photosynthesis, evapotranspiration, and crop consumptive water use are introduced followed by an overview of the spatial variability of precipitation and the resulting need for irrigation. The final activity will introduce you to virtual water embedded in the food you eat and your water footprint.

The short animated video that follows was produced by the United Nations' Water group for World Water Day and illustrates how much water is embedded in a few different food products. The numbers are given in liters, so it's helpful to remember that there are 3.8 liters per gallon. A liter is a little bigger than a quart. In this module, we'll look at why it takes so much water to produce food and you'll estimate how much water you eat.

Video: All You Eat (0:49)

Click for a transcript of the All You Eat Video.
This video has music only, no voice. Words on the screen read:

World water day 2012

Why is water so important to our food security?

Your bread: 650 liters

Your milk: 200 liters

Your eggs: 135 liters

Your steal: 7000 liters

Your vegetables: 13 liters

Your burger: 2400 liters


Agriculture accounts for 70% of our total water use

So. Now. You. Know. Why.

By: Faowater

If you do not see the video above, please go to YouTube to watch it.