Microsoft’s Carbon Footprint Rewind

Microsoft’s Carbon Footprint Rewind

February 3, 2020

Microsoft plans to become “carbon negative” by 2030 by using both natural and technological solutions.

The company recently shared a big picture view of its commitment to sustainability efforts. Microsoft plans to reach zero emissions across its entire supply chain.  The global network of data centers operated by Microsoft will be operated in the future by renewable energy.


Video Spotlight:


This post is based on the CBS News article, Microsoft plans to erase its entire carbon footprint since 1975 founding, by Irina Ivanova, January 16, 2020, and the YouTube videos in the Video Spotlight above. Image source: Shutterstock / Toa55.

Discussion Questions:

1. How can Microsoft force supply chain partners to be carbon free?  Will this be possible by 2030? Why or why not?

Guidance: Students should perform a quick internet search related to these questions.  Answers will vary, but consider the need for electric vehicles as one stumbling block at this time.  Carbon free means trucking will have Continue reading

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Heated Issue in Sriracha Supply Chain

Heated Issue in Sriracha Supply Chain

August 19, 2019

Tensions now run hot between Sriracha producer Huy Fong Foods and Underwood Ranches, the largest domestic source of the fresh jalapenos that are the main ingredient in the Southeast Asian sauce.

In the past, Underwood produced 100 million pounds of peppers per year on California farmland for Huy Fong.

The model worked this way: Underwood estimated the cost of the upcoming year’s harvest, Huy Fong Foods fronted the money and assumed the risk, and at the end of each year the two companies settled up.

After 28 years of business and friendship, issues arose and the relationship deteriorated.  Fong sued Underwood for not repaying a $1.5 million overpayment for the 2016 harvest season.  While the jury awarded to Fong, it concurrently gave Underwood Ranches $10 million in punitive damages and $14.8 million for contracts lost over the next two years when Huy Fong sourced its peppers elsewhere. 


Video Spotlight:


This post is based on the Modern Farmer article, Sriracha and Its Pepper Farmer Are Mad at Each Other, by Dan Nosowitz, July 23, 2019; the San Gabriel Valley Tribune article,  Continue reading

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Poaching Constrains Supply of Elvers

Poaching Constrains Supply of Elvers

The supply chain of baby eels, called elvers, is facing tighter controls from Elver Fishery in Maine to Eel Dish in Japan.

The root cause? Illegal poaching.  A pound of elvers goes for more than a thousand dollars.

State law enforcement officers will oversee the weighing, packing and shipping of the eels to ensure elvers are legally harvested from participating fishermen within a quota of 9,688 pounds per fishery.


Video Spotlight: Poaching Threatens Maine’s Eel Fishing Industry


This post is based on the Washington Post article, New controls in Maine to prevent poaching of valuable eels, by Patrick Whittle, February 22, 2019, and the YouTube video, Poaching Threatens Maine’s Eel Fishing Industry, by AP, August 12, 2017. Image source:(c) Erica Simone Leeds

Discussion Questions:

1. Identify the unethical and illegal behaviors spotlighted in Maine’s baby eel supply chain.

Guidance: Examples of unethical and illegal behavior include poaching eels from rivers and streams, exporting poached eels to Asian aquaculture companies, exceeding eels quotas to profit from illegal sales, and tampering with eel shipments to bypass the state’s tracking system. Each of these behaviors is illegal, but student discussion can also focus on ethicality.

2. What steps Continue reading

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