May 2012
Paper 1
ANSWER AND MARKING SCHEME (20 marks each question)
Question 1
i) Reasons why parents ought to follow parental courses:
(2 x 1 mark)
Before the birth of a child:
Learn how to bring-up a child in a formal, but relaxed environment, and be taught
by professional and experienced personnel. That way the parents will build up
their knowledge and confidence, in preparation for the birth and upbringing of a
baby, and ensure that they are getting accurate information.
Parents receive a lot of practical advice at a pre-natal class, such as how to change
a diaper, bathing a baby, feeding, and all the other basics you should be best
prepared for.
Parents are prepared for labour: taught breathing exercises, organising visits in the
ante-natal, delivery and post-natal hospital wards, etc.
Provides a social group where parents-to-be can share the same experiences they
are going through. The extra support can develop into new friendship that can last
throughout pregnancy and the child’s childhood.
(2 x 1 mark)
When the young child is following late primary schooling:
These programmes will assist parents in dealing with their children who are
growing up, and update them with the latest ways to handle leadership,
communication, child development and drug and alcohol abuse issues.
The courses will also provide a social arena where the parents can vent their
family problems encountered in the daily up-bringing of children, and
professionals can give them some expert help to assist them to overcome these
Learn about entities (governmental and non-governmental) that can assist them or
their children on different matters.
ii) (8 X 0.5 marks for benefits), (8 X 0.5 marks) for each area of development
Benefits of play activities for various areas of development, and activities suitable for
a three year old:
Play activities
Reduces fear, anxiety, stress,
Creates joy, intimacy, self-esteem
and mastery not based on other's
loss of esteem
Improves emotional flexibility and
Increases calmness, resilience and
adaptability and ability to deal
with surprise and change
Decreases tactile defensiveness
Healing process for hurts
Increase linguistic capabilities for
communication purposes
Enhances feelings of acceptance of
Increases empathy, compassion,
and sharing
Creates options and choices
Models relationships based on
inclusion rather than exclusion
Alternative to aggressor-victim
model of relationships
Decreases revenge and need for
self defence
Improves touch and nonverbal
Play ball, using the swings, slide, etc
Role playing, dressing up,
Role play
Role play, ‘Iz-zunzana ddur ddur’
traditional Maltese game. Hide and seek.
Role play
Role play
All group play activities
Team games
Team games and role play
Team games, role play, hide & seek
Role play
Role play
socialization skills
Increases attention and attachment
Positive emotions increase the
efficiency of immune, endocrine,
and cardiovascular systems
 Decreases stress, fatigue, injury,
and depression
 Increases range of motion, agility,
coordination, balance, flexibility,
vestibular and proprioceptive
motion, and fine and gross motor
 Integrates sensory-motor,
kinaesthetic and emotional
Increases efficiency of brain
 Increases creativity and imagination
Team games and role play
All play activities, Charades
All play activities
All types of physical activities;
running, swimming, jumping, kicking
All types of physical activity.
Running, swimming, dancing, wobble
boards, balance boards, rope climbing,
biking, paddling, pushing and pulling,
All types of physical activity.
Matching, building blocks, counting
games, Charades.
Drawing, role play, building blocks,
clay/ sand activities.
iii) (6 X 0.5 marks)
Factors parents should consider when choosing the child care centre for their
Is the child centre licensed and accredited?
The educational, health and safety standards of the child care centre. Are they in
line with the national regulations set?
Qualifications of staff. Are they qualified for this job? Do they have first aid
Type of education programmes and provisions followed at the centre.
The staff-to-child ratio in the classroom. Does it change throughout the day?
Operation hours tally with parents’ childminding needs.
Child centre policy when the child is injured or falls sick at the centre.
Vicinity of child centre from work place.
Restrictions enforced with regard to picking up children.
Fees and any additional expenses, example for meals, nappy changing, etc.
Parent involvement in programmes and excursions.
iv) (3 X 1 mark), (2 X 1 mark)
Advantages and disadvantages of having children looked after by relatives and
Less financial demands on the young family.
Parents will have full trust in their friends and relatives to care of their children.
More one-to-one care.
Hours of child minding can be set according to the parents’ needs.
Relative/friend may share similar views on issues such as discipline, food and
Children are familiar with home environment of relatives and friends.
Children are less likely to get all the colds and ear infections that many children in
childcare tend to bring home.
If children are sick, the relatives can still mind them.
Having a close personal relationship with the child's caregiver can make it
difficult for parents to establish an employer-employee relationship.
If relative is a grandparent of the child, they may feel that they know more about
raising children than parents do. They may have their own ideas about issues such
as feeding, discipline and sleep.
They may undermine parent’s authority, which can confuse the child and end up
damaging the relationship with the relative.
A closer bond may develop between the relative/friend and child.
The activities that children are engaged in may not be so professional as those
organised at a professional child care centre.
Safety standards and hygiene regulations may not be of a high level.
Question 2
i) (1 mark)
Explain family quality of life:
Family quality of life pertains to the wellbeing of the family as a whole whilst
individual quality of life centres or focuses on the individual within the family.
(2 x 0.5 mark, 2 x 0.5 mark)
Indicators of good and bad quality of life:
GOOD indicators
BAD indicators
High/reasonably high monetary income
Healthy family members
Good employable family members
Good level of education/access to
education for all members
 Reasonable
expenditure on basic needs
Low monetary income
Ill/health issues within family
Unemployed family members
Low education level/no or limited
access to education
 Low household monthly expenditure
on basic needs because there is not
enough money for it OR extremely
high monthly expenditure due to lack
of budget or expensive medical
 Opportunity to save money on a regular  Debts on regular basis
 Access to basic services e.g. health,  Limited access to basic services
 Safe housing environment with all  Housing lacking basic needs, or
basic needs in a house e.g. functional
bathroom, good drainage and water
including unsafe neighbourhood
system, hot water system
 Family
stress  Family members do not possess stress
management skills to overcome
stressful situations and prevent burn out
management techniques in stressful
situations and revert to comfort eating,
smoking, substance misuse (alcohol,
 Take
physical  Not sensitive to eco-issues and always
surroundings and care for the general
expect the central government to take
environment. Are proactive on ecothe necessary action. Laid back or
laissez faire attitude.
 Care for their health by taking the  No interest in health issues. Take
medical action only when the need
accidents and illness. Carry out regular
medical check-ups to safeguard their
ii) (1 mark)
Definition of social exclusion:
People are excluded when they are not part of the networks which support most
people in ordinary life: networks of family, friends, community and employment.
This is a very broad concept which not only includes deprivation, but problems of
social relationships, including stigma, social isolation and failures in social
(2 x 0.5 mark)
Groups of people at risk of social exclusion:
Poor people, ex-prisoners, homeless people, people with AIDS, people with learning
disabilities, or psychiatric patients, might all be said to be at risk of exclusion. People
with physical disabilities, obese people, people who suffer from body deformities
example amputees, stammering individuals, crossed eyed individuals, refugees, and
many others
(1 mark)
Types of social exclusion:
Three main types of social exclusion are described:
 The first is financial - exclusion is identified with poverty, and its effect on a
person's ability to participate in ‘normal’ activities i.e. activities practised by those
that form a particular group of people who share a similar culture.
 The second is exclusion from the labour market - exclusion is strongly identified
with long-term unemployment.
 Third, there is exclusion in its social sense - this identifies exclusion partly with
alienation from social networks, and partly with the circumstances of stigmatised
(3 x 1 mark)
Causes for increased poverty and social exclusion:
Families with more than two children and single-parent households carry the
highest burden of risk in terms of poverty and deprivation, since cost of living has
increased dramatically over the past 15 years.
Income poverty – it is difficult for people on basic earnings to cope with the
higher cost of living (commodities bills).
Lack of education for example early school leavers – this puts a limitation on the
types of jobs available for such people. In addition the jobs available are not
highly paid, so it is a continuous struggle for such people to make ends meet.
Young people are finding it difficult to work good work with good pay especially
since these people need to continue studying well in their 20s in order to get good
jobs. Some students have to support their own studies, as families may not be able
to cope. Furthermore applicants need to have already some years’ experience for
certain good jobs, excluding them automatically from applying.
People with low income will not have access to immediate medical and health
services as they simply rely on welfare services, which, despite the effort, waiting
lists are growing longer every year. Lack of medical and health assistance will
prevent people in need of it from working daily and full-time, thus reducing their
pay even further.
Though longevity increased over the years, elderly people who are living on their
basic pensions and are in need of medical assistance are finding it hard for them
to live on their pensions and pay for their medicine even though they are eligible
to certain free medicine. In addition, pensions do not increase over the years like
salaries, so a pensioner may have to live on the same pension for quite a number
of years.
Persons who would like to buy lodgings are finding it difficult to do so since most
dwellings are expensive, so some of these people are entering into huge loan
contracts making it difficult for them to cope. One result of this would be that
people go to live in incomplete houses which lack comfort and healthy
environment. This leads to negative health effects, which then require medical
treatment, which again costs money, putting an increased burden on these people.
Another result would be negative mental effects leading to depression, forcing
these affected people to go on sick leave or even leave jobs and end up worse than
they started.
iii) (1 x 1 mark)
Malta’s contribution towards eradicating poverty and social exclusion:
National Action Plan on Poverty and Social Inclusion
The first plan was drafted in 2004 which lasted till 2006; the second plan is an
improved continuation of the first and came into action between 2006 and 2008.
This project was funded by: Ministry for the Family and Social Solidarity (being the
lead/coordinator ministry in the area of social inclusion), Ministry for Education,
Youth and Employment and Ministry for Tourism and Culture.
Target group was population at risk of poverty and social exclusion, with a special
emphasis on children and youth.
Malta’s National Action Plans against Poverty and Social Exclusion insert in the
European Council of Lisbon (2000) programme towards the eradication of poverty
and the achievement of an inclusive society by 2010. The targeted vulnerable/at riskof-poverty groups involve a wide range of categories (children, youths, families,
victims of domestic violence, addiction, disability, mental health, elderly, irregular
immigrants, long term unemployed and single parents), while the multi-policy
approach focuses upon several areas, including facilitating employment; investing in
human capital; building stronger communities (prevention and intervention);
strengthening the voluntary sector; investing in social welfare services.
The second Action Plan builds on the first one and includes 70 original policy
measures (extended from the previous plan), plus 21 new policies, all characterised
programmes and services that are interdisciplinary and outreach oriented
prevention programmes that create awareness and provide early intervention
the introduction of new legislation that protects the most vulnerable
the implementation of practical measures that particularly target education as
the means for enhancing investment in human capital
the creation of more employment opportunities
the provision of adequate structures to enhance networking
All policies target individuals and social groups who may be at risk of poverty and
social exclusion at any point in their life, with some specifically focusing on children
and young people, especially those with special needs and disabilities, early school
leavers etc., to enhance their capabilities to integrate in the labour market and
empower their emancipatory potential.
(2 x 1 mark)
Promote social cohesion through effective collaboration, co-ordination and
Safeguard present and future generations against poverty, empower the
emancipatory potential of children and young people.
Promote an inclusive society through policy measures that provide equal
opportunities to everyone, including the integration of persons with disability
and disadvantaged groups.
Reduce early school leaving and illiteracy rates, effectively address inclusive
and quality education for all.
Enhance the link between academic education/lifelong learning and
iv) (1 mark)
Definition of social influence:
Social influence is defined as change in an individual's thoughts, feelings, attitudes, or
behaviours that results from interaction with another individual or a group. Social
influence is distinct from conformity, power, and authority.
(2 x 1 mark)
Implications of social influences on individuals and families:
An individual may feel the need to 
change attitudes, beliefs and behaviours
to what society perceives as normal, even
though the concerned individual may not
agree with the change.
Increased influence exerted by a peer group 
in encouraging a person to change his or her
attitudes, values, or behaviour in order to
conform to group norms. A person affected
by peer pressure may or may not want to
belong to any particular groups.
 A person may change his/her attitudes, 
beliefs and behaviours to match those of
a well-liked and respected individual.
An individual may accept new attitudes,
beliefs and behaviours agreeing with the
new trends both publicly and privately.
Tensions may result within family members
as to what the family as a whole perceive as
normal and what individual family members
believe and how to behave in order to
Family members may be compliant with the
whole family norm keeping their dissenting
opinions to themselves.
A family member may become alienated
from the rest of the family as he/she refuses
to comply with the rest of the family due to
the new trends the family member has
adopted or vice versa.
(2 x 1 mark)
Implications of cultural influences on individual and family lifestyles:
Cultures influence the development of an 
individual’s personality.
Culture influences an individual’s 
Individual’s knowledge broadens due to 
introduction of new cultures.
An individual can understand more and 
accepts more diversity and diverse
opinions and lifestyles once he/she is
introduced to them.
A person can alienate him/herself from 
different cultural attitudes and beliefs in
attempt to reject new influences or
Different cultures give rise to new
craftsmanship which an individual may
learn and adopt as practice or an
innovative idea for new business, thus
creating possibilities of new jobs.
Family lifestyles may become enriched due
new cultural habits, including diets and
eating habits/cuisines.
Size of families may change due to other
cultural influences.
Different cultural influences may give rise to
behaviour, which may either help or hinder
an existing family lifestyle.
Old practices which were good but deemed
as old at some point in time may re-emerge
due to different cultural influences injected
in the present society e.g. re-introduction of
Interaction between parents and children
may be enhanced, increased or vice versa
due to different cultural influences.
v) (3 x 1 mark)
Three ways how management of resources and economic influences can assist in the
reduction of stress and conflict in families:
Most parents tend to keep the number of children small opting for 1 or 2
children in order not to have difficulties in raising their children as desired.
Since considerable resources must be devoted to food, clothes, transportation,
entertainment and schooling, it may be wise for a family to draw up a monthly
budget to ensure that all finances are being taken care of and maybe save as
Keeping the environment in mind, a family can reduce costs for water and
electricity considerably by being efficient and conscious on the amount of
energy used.
Separation of waste can help a family save on resources by re-using or
recycling waste rather than buying new things further reducing costs.
Enrolling in health/medical insurance and pension plans will help a family put
their mind at rest that when in need there will be assistance and when a
decrease in income (i.e. pension) is experienced, something will be making up
for the decrease. This will ensure that a family can keep the standard of living
they strived for.
Question 3
i) (2 x 1 mark for definition), (4 x 0.5 marks for indicators)
Definition and indicators of:
High humidity
Lack of ventilation
Ventilation is the act of 
supplying fresh air and getting
rid of foul air. If air is not 
circulated, lack of ventilation 
Humidity is the amount of
moisture or water vapour in the
air. When this is too high it can
Condensation on windows
Wet stains on walls and ceilings
Mouldy bathroom
Musty smells
Allergic reactions
Fabric upholsteries feel wet
High humidity levels with the
above indicators
Stale air
Odours and mildew infect the air
ii) Negative impacts these unsafe and unhealthy housing conditions have on:
(3 x 1 mark)
Human health:
Musty, foul smelling odours which can be bothersome and cause nausea.
These microscopic water molecules can make you itch, sneeze and cough.
Since humidity promotes mould growth and dust mite population growth, which
are significant indoor allergens, they can set off allergic sensitivity and trigger
rhinitis and asthma.
Lack of air ventilation can cause dizziness and a sense of uneasiness, which will
impact the work performance of household members.
Infectious disease with greater frequency of complications.
Airborne infections, example TB.
Dampness promotes venomous (with termites) buildings.
Rheumatic conditions because of dampness in the house.
Increase in child mortality (death) due to increased complications in infections.
Increased chest conditions, example bronchitis.
Increased mental illness, mainly depressions. Unfortunately depression can hit
babies as from 9 months old to adults due to unhappiness that results from living
in such conditions.
(3 x 1 mark)
The home structure and its contents:
Causes warped wood floors, furniture and trim.
Causes chipped and peeling paint and wallpaper.
Causes wet stains on walls and ceilings.
Encourages the growth of dust mites, fungi, bacteria, mould and mildew on walls,
ceilings, tiles, etc.
Causes rot and attracts pests (example: silver fish).
iii) Measures that can be taken when planning, constructing and furnishing a home, to
lessen the humidity level and ensure adequate ventilation.
(2 x 1 mark)
Planning Phase:
Planning many south facing windows to ensure maximum exposure to the sun
facing area and good ventilation.
Incorporate effective ventilation systems. Have ventilation facilities at the top of
the house (example vent-holes, ridge vents, static roof vents, gable end vents or
wind-driven turbines), so that the hot air will escape out and the room will start to
cool. Besides these vents, you should plan to provide an inlet for fresh air to
maintain the balance, by having another set of ventilators at the bottom of the
room for the entry of fresh air.
Ensure maximum insulation to avoid temperature change in the house. This can
be achieved by planning to have:
Foam filledMethod
Double Glazing
Green roofs
Spray foam kits are bought. The area of the building the needs to be
insulated is inspected for fissures. The necessary repairs are made. Then
(roof, walls, window areas, etc. ) are filled with the spray (which
it Works
expands 100 times), which instantly forms foam and after some time this
glazing making
keeps your
at apermanent.
constant temperature
foam solidifies
the house
After the foam
extra foam that seeps through the wall or roof, can be shaved away.
any kind in a vacuum, so heat cannot be conducted through it. Therefore
roof isthe
a roof
of a building
heat inside
cannot bethat
vice versa.covered
with vegetation, and a growing medium planted over a waterproofing
a vacuum
allow heating
sound to (by
so it would
mass be
anda brilliant
resistance value).
Packing involves inserting insulation material (textiles, paper, wood chips,
etc. in wall cavities and roof layers.
This creates entrapped air pockets which will remain warm, and hence this
insulates the roof and the walls.
(2 x 1 mark)
Construction Phase:
• Ensure that a damp-proof course is inserted on the foundation wall a few
centimetres about the ground level, to stop rising dampness.
• For waterproofing concrete and other masonry walls above ground, apply two
coats of cement paint, tinted with mineral colouring if desired. Waterproofed
coatings to seal absorbent brick and other outside surfaces may be needed.
• Spread a layer of moisture-barrier material over the soil in crawl spaces under
houses. You can use heavy roofing paper or polyethylene plastic film.
• Install whole-room fans. This will drive all the hot air upwards that escapes
through the roof vents. As the windows are kept open, cold air from outside
replaces the hot air. This will not only provide appropriate ventilation, but also
reduces household energy bills.
• Install exhaust fans which are a suitable way of expelling the stale air from the
• Install an air conditioner or a dehumidifier.
(2 x 1 mark)
Furnishing Phase:
Remove plants as these increase humidity in homes.
Furnish your home with furniture made from leather, wood, metal or plastic.
Use hardwood, linoleum flooring or washable area rugs.
Use washable curtains made of plain cotton or synthetic fabric.
Reduce the use of open fires as these increase humidity and cause the production
of carbon monoxide.
iv) (4 x 0.5 mark)
Recommendations for buying the dehumidifier
• Energy consumption: the wattage the dehumidifier has.
• The capacity of the dehumidifier: is it suitable for the place it will be positioned
• The operating cost of the dehumidifier.
• Does it have a frost-free feature?
• Does it reset to your preset conditions after a power interruption?
• Any inbuilt energy saving features?
• Can it be drained into some external container or directly into a garden/yard
• Is it CFC free?
• Has recyclable material been used?
• Could parts of the dehumidifier be dismantled/reused or recycled after its ‘life’?
• Recyclability/sustainable management of packaging – e.g. member of Green Dot
• The guarantee and after sales service available.
(4 x 0.5 mark)
How to care for the dehumidifier.
• Turn off and unplug your unit when it is not in use. If you don't plan to use
your dehumidifier for several days, make sure to turn it off and unplug it. This
will not only save you energy but will also save the motor from working overtime
when it isn't necessary. Even the best dehumidifier can wear down with continual
• Empty the collection bucket whenever necessary and before storing. Most
dehumidifiers feature a removable bucket and an indicator that lights up when it is
full. When you plan to store your unit or won't be using it for a while, you'll want
to empty the water so that it doesn't breed bacteria. Before replacing the bucket in
your dehumidifier, wash it with soapy water and rinse it well. If you need to get
rid of mould and bacteria, add a bit of white distilled vinegar and let it sit for a
few minutes before rinsing and drying the bucket thoroughly. White vinegar can
also get rid of any odours in your air dehumidifier.
• Clean the exterior of your dehumidifier. Even the best dehumidifier will get
dusty over time, so you'll want to vacuum the unit's grills to remove all dust
clumps and lint periodically. Dip a cloth in soapy water and wash the exterior of
your dehumidifier; then rinse it and dry it with a clean cloth. If you use a portable
dehumidifier, you'll also want to check the casters to be sure they are free of dust.
Check the handle of your portable dehumidifier, especially if it hasn't been moved
in a while.
• Check your dehumidifier's filter once a month. While you may not need to
replace the filter monthly in a mini dehumidifier, you may have to replace it more
frequently in a basement dehumidifier, especially if you live in a particularly
muggy area. It's a good idea to check the filter at least monthly to be sure, no
matter what your environment is like.
Question 4
i) (1 mark)
Definition of sustainable development:
Sustainable development is a pattern of resource use that aims to meet human needs
while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the
present, but also for generations to come.
(2 x 1 mark)
Examples of sustainable development:
A sustainable city – this considers the natural environment in its design and aims
to reduce the input of energy, water and other resources, as well as minimising the
generation of waste and other environmental disturbances.
Eco-industrial parks – these are areas where industries are placed together to cooperatively manage the use of resources and environmental impacts caused by
their operations. By sharing resources they improve efficiency and create less
Companies are also recognising the importance of incorporating sustainable
development principles into their operations. This is done by using recycled and
more environmentally friendly products, and more efficient manufacturing
processes, which have reduced their energy and water consumption. The levels of
waste, particularly hazardous waste have also been greatly reduced.
Automobile sector where electric cars and hydrogen-based cars are being
developed and marketed as the cars of the future. Such cars do not use any fossil
fuels, reducing the negative impact on the environment.
The power sector has gone through sustainable development with the
introduction on renewable means of energy such as Solar Electric Farms, Wind
Farms, Tidal Generators, Biomass Electricity Generators.
The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement linked to the United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change. The major feature of the Kyoto
Protocol is that it sets binding targets for 37 industrialized countries and the
European community for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These
amount to an average of five per cent against 1990 levels over the five-year period
2008-2012. The major distinction between the Protocol and the Convention is that
while the Convention encouraged industrialised countries to stabilize GHG
emissions, the Protocol commits them to do so.
Designing buildings to permit usage of maximum natural light for the purposes
of lighting. Such buildings are called green buildings, since the materials used as
well as the design are environment friendly.
ii) (3 x 1 mark) (3 x 1 mark)
Three examples of individual or family practices with a reason for each:
Organic farming such as rotating crops is a chemical free way to maximize the
growth potential of gardening land as well as to diminish the presence of disease
in the soil. This example of sustainable development can benefit home gardeners
as well as commercial farmers.
Installing efficient showers, toilets, and other water using appliances in existing
structures and new construction is a way of making the most of available
resources by conserving water since less water is used by individuals and
families. A major waste of water in existing toilets is leaks. A slow toilet leak is
undetectable to the eye, but can waste hundreds of litres each month. One way to
check this is to put food dye in the tank, and to see if the water in the toilet bowl
turns the same colour. In the event of a leaky flapper, one can replace it with an
adjustable toilet flapper, which allows self adjustment of the amount of water per
Installing a photovoltaic system allows energy from the sun to be harnessed to
replace or supplement grid power without the need to use up resources that are not
renewable, reducing the amount of fossil fuels used locally and globally and their
impact on the environment.
A more sustainable means of acquiring food is to purchase locally and seasonally.
Buying food from local farmers reduces carbon offsets caused by long-distance
food transport, and stimulates the local economy. Local, small-scale farming
operations also typically utilize more sustainable methods of agriculture than
conventional industrial farming systems, such as decreased tillage, nutrient
cycling, fostered biodiversity and reduced chemical pesticide and fertilizer
applications. Adapting a more regional, seasonally-based diet is more sustainable
as it entails purchasing less energy and resource demanding produce that naturally
grow within a local area and require no long-distance transport. These vegetables
and fruits are also grown and harvested within their suitable growing season.
Thus, seasonal food farming does not require energy intensive greenhouse
production, extensive irrigation, plastic packaging and long-distance transport
from importing non-regional foods, and other environmental stressors. Farmers’
markets, public events where local small-scale farmers gather and sell their
produce, are a good source for obtaining local food and knowledge about local
farming productions. As well as promoting localization of food, farmers markets
are a central gathering place for community interaction.
Urban gardening – In addition to local, small-scale farms, there has been a recent
emergence in urban agriculture expanding from community gardens to private
home gardens. With this trend, both farmers and ordinary people are becoming
involved in food production. A network of urban farming systems helps to further
ensure regional food security and encourages self-sufficiency and cooperative
interdependence within communities. With every bite of food raised from urban
gardens, negative environmental impacts are reduced in numerous ways. For
instance, vegetables and fruits raised within small-scale gardens and farms are not
grown with tremendous applications of nitrogen fertilizer required for industrial
agricultural operations.
Preserving and storing foods reduces reliance on long-distance transported food
and the market industry. Home-grown foods can be preserved and stored outside
of their growing season and continually consumed throughout the year, enhancing
self-sufficiency and independence from the supermarket. Food can be preserved
and saved by dehydration, freezing, vacuum packing, canning, bottling, pickling
and jellying.
Transportation – With rising peak oil concerns, climate warming exacerbated by
carbon emissions and high energy prices, the conventional automobile industry is
becoming less and less feasible to the conversation of sustainability. Revisions of
urban transport systems that foster mobility, low-cost transportation and healthier
urban environments are needed. Such urban transport systems should consist of a
combination of rail transport, bus transport, bicycle pathways and pedestrian
walkways. Public transport systems such as underground rail systems and bus
transit systems shift huge numbers of people away from reliance on car
mobilization and dramatically reduce the rate of carbon emissions caused by
automobile transport. Carpooling is another alternative for reducing oil
consumption and carbon emissions by transit.
In comparison with automobiles, bicycles are a paradigm of energy efficient
personal transportation. Bicycles increase mobility while alleviating congestion,
lowering air and noise pollution, and increasing physical exercise. Most
importantly, they do not emit climate-disturbing carbon dioxide. Bike-sharing
programs are beginning to boom throughout the world and are modelled in
leading cities such as Paris, Amsterdam and London. Bike-sharing programs offer
kiosks and docking stations that supply hundreds to thousands of bikes for rental
throughout a city through small deposits or affordable memberships.
A recent boom has occurred in electric bikes especially in China and other Asian
countries. Electric bikes are similar to plug-in hybrid vehicles in that they are
battery powered and can be plugged into the provincial electric grid for
recharging as needed. In contrast to plug-in hybrid cars, electric bikes do not
directly use any fossil fuels. Adequate sustainable urban transportation is
dependent upon proper city infrastructure and planning that incorporates efficient
public transit along with bicycle and pedestrian-friendly pathways.
As populations and resource demands climb, waste production contributes to
emissions of carbon dioxide, leaching of hazardous materials into the soil and
waterways, and methane emissions. There are a number of ways to reduce waste
in sustainable living.
o One method is reducing paper waste, such as by taking action to cancel
junk mail and move paper transactions to an online document. Another
method to reduce waste is to buy in bulk, which reduces packaging
o Preventing food waste is an alternative to organic waste compiling to
create costly methane emissions. Food waste can be reintegrated into the
environment through composting. Composting can be carried out at home
or locally, with community composting.
o An additional example of how to reduce waste is being cognizant of not
buying materials with limited use in excess, such as paint. Reduction aides
in reducing the toxicity of waste if non-hazardous or less hazardous items
are selected.
o By reusing materials, one lives sustainably by not contributing to the
addition of waste to landfills. Reuse saves natural resources by decreasing
the necessity of raw material extraction.
o Recycling, a process that breaks down used items into raw materials in
order to make new materials, is a particularly useful means of contributing
to the renewal of goods. Recycling incorporates three primary processes;
collection and processing, manufacturing, and purchasing recycled
iii) (1 mark)
Definition of sustainable homes:
Sustainable homes are built using sustainable methods, materials, and facilitate green
practices, enabling a sustainable lifestyle. Their construction and maintenance have
neutral impacts on the Earth. Oftentimes, if necessary, they are close in proximity to
essential services such as grocery stores, schools, daycares, work, or public transit,
making it possible to commit to sustainable transportation choices. Sometimes, they
are off-the-grid homes that do not require any public energy, water, or sewer service.
(3 x 1 mark)
Three features of sustainable homes:
Power – Sustainable homes may not require any public energy. Alternatively,
sustainable homes may be linked to a grid supplied by a power plant that is using
sustainable power sources, buying power as is normal convention. Additionally,
sustainable homes may be connected to a grid, but generate their own electricity
through renewable means and sell any excess to a utility. There are two common
methods to approaching this option: net metering and double metering. Net
metering uses the common meter that is installed in most homes, running forward
when power is used from the grid, and running backward when power is put into
the grid (which allows them to “net“ out their total energy use, putting excess
energy into the grid when not needed, and using energy from the grid during peak
hours, when you may not be able to produce enough immediately). Power
companies can quickly purchase the power that is put back into the grid, as it is
being produced. Double metering involves installing two meters: one measuring
electricity consumed, the other measuring electricity created. Additionally, or in
replace of selling their renewable energy, sustainable home owners may choose to
bank their excess energy by using it to charge batteries. This gives them the
option to use the power later during less favourable power-generating times (i.e.:
night-time, when there has been no wind, etc.), and to be completely independent
of the electrical grid.
Sustainably designed houses are generally sited so as to create as little of a
negative impact on the surrounding ecosystem as possible, oriented to the sun so
that it creates the best possible microclimate (typically, the long axis of the house
or building should be oriented east-west), and provide natural shading or wind
barriers where and when needed, among many other considerations. The design of
a sustainable shelter affords the options it has later (i.e.: using passive solar
lighting and heating, creating temperature buffer zones by adding porches, deep
overhangs to help create favourable microclimates, etc.)
Sustainably constructed houses involve environmentally-friendly management of
waste building materials such as recycling and composting, use non-toxic and
renewable, recycled, reclaimed, or low-impact production materials that have
been created and treated in a sustainable fashion (such as using organic or waterbased finishes), use as much locally available materials and tools as possible so as
to reduce the need for transportation, and use low-impact production methods
(methods that minimize effects on the environment). In order for any material to
be considered green, it must be resource efficient, not compromise indoor air
quality or water conservation, and be energy efficient (both in processing and
when in use in the shelter). Resource efficiency can be achieved by using as much
recycled content, reusable or recyclable content, materials that employ recycled or
recyclable packaging, locally available material, salvaged or remanufactured
material, material that employs resource efficient manufacturing, and long-lasting
material as possible. Examples of some sustainable materials are cellulose
insulation, cork, linoleum and insulation concrete forms, natural rubber and
organic cotton insulation.
Insulation of a sustainable home is important because of the energy it conserves
throughout the life of the home. Well insulated walls and lofts using green
materials are a must as it reduces or, in combination with a house that is well
designed, eliminates the need for heating and cooling altogether. Installation of
insulation varies according to the type of insulation being used. Typically, lofts
are insulated by strips of insulating material laid between rafters. Walls with
cavities are done in much the same manner. For walls that do not have cavities
behind them, solid-wall insulation may be necessary which can decrease internal
space and can be expensive to install. Roof insulation with
polyurethane/Expanded Polystyrene are also a good insulation from heat in
summer and humidity of rainfall and cold in winter. Energy-efficient windows are
another important factor in insulation. Simply assuring that windows (and doors)
are well sealed greatly reduces energy loss in a home. Double or Triple glazed
windows are the typical method to insulating windows, trapping gas or creating a
vacuum between two or three panes of glass allowing heat to be trapped inside or
out. Low-emissivity or Low-E glass is another option for window insulation. It is
a coating on windowpanes of a thin, transparent layer of metal oxide and works
by reflecting heat back to its source, keeping the interior warm during the winter
and cool during the summer. Simply hanging heavy-backed curtains in front of
windows may also help their insulation.
Energy efficiency and water conservation are also major considerations in
sustainable housing. If using appliances, computers, HVAC systems, electronics,
or lighting, the sustainable-minded often look for an Energy Star label, which is
government-backed and holds stricter regulations in energy and water efficiency
than is required by law. Ideally, a sustainable shelter should be able to completely
run the appliances it uses using renewable energy and should strive to have a
neutral impact on the Earth’s water sources. Greywater, including water from
washing machines, sinks, showers and baths may be reused in landscape irrigation
and toilets as a method of water conservation. Likewise, rainwater harvesting
from storm-water runoff is also a sustainable method to conserve water usage in a
sustainable shelter. All houses in Malta which are built need to have a well
stipulated by local legislation in order for households to have other sources of
water which is highly needed especially in summer. Well-water has various uses
including watering plants and gardens and washing purposes.
iv) (1 x 2 marks)
The difference between reuse and recycle:
Recycling is processing used materials (waste) into new products to prevent waste of
potentially useful materials, reduce the consumption of fresh raw materials, reduce
energy usage, reduce air pollution (from incineration) and water pollution (from
landfilling) by reducing the need for "conventional" waste disposal, and lowering
greenhouse gas emissions as compared to the production of a new product.
Recyclable materials include many kinds of glass, paper, metal, plastic, textiles, and
electronics. Although similar in effect, the composting or other reuse of
biodegradable waste – such as food or garden waste – is not typically considered
recycling. Materials to be recycled are either brought to a bring-in site or civic
amenity centre, or picked up from household doorsteps, then sorted, cleaned, and
reprocessed into new materials bound for manufacturing.
In the strictest sense, recycling of a material would produce a fresh supply of the
same material—for example, used office paper would be converted into new office
paper, or used foamed polystyrene into new polystyrene. However, this is often
difficult or too expensive (compared with producing the same product from raw
materials or other sources), so "recycling" of many products or materials, involves
their reuse in producing different materials (e.g., paperboard) instead. Another form
of recycling is the salvage of certain materials from complex products, either due to
their intrinsic value (e.g., lead from car batteries, or gold from computer
components), or due to their hazardous nature (e.g., removal and reuse of mercury
from various items).
(1 x 1 mark)
Problems attributed to recycling:
 The costs and energy used in collection and transportation detract from (and
outweigh) the costs and energy saved in the production process. The jobs
produced by the recycling industry can be a poor trade for the jobs lost in logging,
mining, and other industries associated with new production.Materials such as
paper pulp can only be recycled a few times before material degradation prevents
further recycling.
v) (2 x 1 mark)
Benefits of sustainable farming:
Enhance environmental quality and the natural resource base upon which the
agricultural economy depends.
Make the most efficient use of non-renewable resources and on-farm resources
and integrate, where appropriate, natural biological cycles and controls.
Sustain the economic viability of farm operations.
Enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole.
(2 x 1 mark)
Ways of sustainable farming:
 Agroforestry - It is a collective name for land use systems and practices in which
woody perennials are deliberately integrated with crops and/or animals on the
same land management unit. The integration can be either in a spatial mixture or
in a temporal sequence. There are normally both ecological and economic
interactions between woody and non-woody components in agroforestry.
 Mixed Farming - Many farmers in tropical and temperate countries survive by
managing a mix of different crops or animals. The best known form of mixing
occurs probably where crop residues are used to feed the animals and the excreta
from animals are used as nutrients for the crop. Other forms of mixing takes place
where graving under fruit trees keeps the grass short, or where manure from pigs
is used to feed the fish. Mixed farming exists in many forms depending on
external and internal factors. External factors are: Weather Patterns, Market
Prices, Political Stability and Technological Development. Internal factors relate
to Local Soil Characteristics, Composition of family and Farmer’s Ingenuity.
Mixed Farming provides farmers with:
o an opportunity to diversify risk from single-crop production;
o to use labour more efficiently;
o to have a source of cash for purchasing farm inputs;
o to add value to crop or crop by-product;
o combining crops and livestocks.
 Multiple Cropping - The process of growing two or more crops in the same
piece of land, during the same season is called Multiple Cropping. It can be
rightly called a form of polyculture. It can be:
o Double Cropping (the practice where the second crop is planted after
the first has been harvested).
o Relay Cropping (the practice where a second crop is started along with
the first one, before it is harvested).
 Crop Rotation - The process of growing two or more dissimilar or unrelated
crops in the same piece of land in different seasons is known as Crop Rotation.
This process could be adopted as it comes with a series of benefits like:
o Avoiding the build up of pests that often occurs when one species is
continuously cropped.
o The replenishment of nitrogen through the use of green manure in
sequence with cereals and other crops.
o Improves soil structure and fertility, by alternating deep-rooted and
shallow-rooted plants.
o It is a component of polyculture.
Question 5
i) Advantages of advertising for:
(2 x 1 mark)
The consumer:
• Advertisement about new products keeps the customer informed about the new
developments in the industry. They help to provide them with information
regarding the newly launched products.
• Keeps prices low through the development of mass markets.
• Encourages store owners to stock a variety of items so consumers have a variety
to choose from.
• Improves the sale of products. Advertising facilitates a noticeable increase in
the sale of the product. It thus helps reduce per unit cost of the product and helps
the businesses to earn profits.
• Alters the attitudes of people. An effectual advertisement results in a swift
change in the attitudes and habits of the people.
• Direct communication. In earlier days customers believed on the opinions of
retailers, when making the purchases of products. With the rapid spread of media
and advertising to every nook and corner of the world, people have become aware
of the various products that are available in the same category and the freebees
and benefits of purchasing them. So the companies or manufacturers are able to
communicate their message directly to the customers.
• Increase employment. Advertising is a complicated task and a lot of people are
involved in the making of an advertisement. Research team, design team and
many other people are required to make and deliver it. So, advertisements
generate employment for a lot of people.
• Supports free expression by funding media sources.
• Spurs new inventions for the benefit of the consumer.
(2 x 1 mark)
The producer or service provider:
• Promotes competition among producers of products and services.
• Informs consumers about new developments and innovations and hence increases
the demand of the product.
• Informs a wide spectrum of consumers about any special offers.
• Will be able to target different consumers, old customers, prospective customers
and the general public.
• Maximizes the production level in the enterprise.
• Reduces the slumps in profit margin of the products.
• Large amounts of production may lead to stabilize the value of the product.
ii) (3 x 1 mark)
According to law, advertisements can be misleading.
Any advertising which, in any way, either in its wording or presentation:
Deceives or is likely to deceive the persons to whom it is addressed or whom it
By reason of its deceptive nature, is likely to affect their economic behaviour.
or for those reasons, injures are likely to injure a competitor.
Examples of misleading commercial practices
• Claiming to be a signatory to a code of conduct when the trader is not.
• Displaying a trust mark, quality mark or equivalent, without having obtained the
necessary authorization.
• Claiming that a code of conduct has an endorsement from a public or other body
which it does not have.
• Claiming that a trader, including his/her commercial practices, or a product has
been approved, endorsed or authorised by a public or private body when he/she/ it
has not, or making such a claim without complying with the terms of the
approval, endorsement or authorisation.
• Making an invitation to purchase products at a specified price without disclosing
the existence of any reasonable grounds the trader may have for believing that
he/she will not be able to offer for supply or to procure another trader to supply
those products or equivalent products at that price for a period that is, and in
quantities that are, reasonable having regard to the product, the scale of
advertising of the product and the price offered (bait advertising).
• Making an invitation to purchase products at a specified price and then:
o refusing to show the advertised item to consumers; or
o refusing to take orders for it or deliver it within a reasonable time; or
o demonstrating a defective sample of it, with the intention of promoting a
different product (bait and switch).
• Falsely stating that a product will only be available for a very limited time, or that
it will only be available on particular terms for a very limited time, in order to
elicit an immediate decision and deprive consumers of sufficient opportunity or
time to make an informed choice.
• Undertaking to provide after-sales service to consumers with whom the trader has
communicated prior to a transaction in a language which is not an official
language of the Member State where the trader is located, and then making such
service available only in another language without clearly disclosing this to the
consumer before the consumer is committed to the transaction.
Stating or otherwise creating the impression that a product can legally be sold
when it cannot.
Presenting rights given to consumers by law as a distinctive feature of the trader’s
Without prejudice to the provisions of the Broadcasting Act (Cap. 350) and any
regulations made thereunder, using editorial content in the media to promote a
product where a trader has paid for the promotion without making that clear in the
content or by images or sounds clearly identifiable by the consumer (advertorial).
Making a materially inaccurate claim concerning the nature and extent of the risk
to the personal safety or security of the consumer or his family if the consumer
does not purchase the product.
Promoting a product similar to a product made by a particular manufacturer in
such a manner as deliberately to mislead the consumer into believing that the
product is made by that same manufacturer when it is not.
Establishing, operating or promoting a pyramid promotional scheme where a
consumer gives consideration for the opportunity to receive compensation that is
derived primarily from the introduction of other consumers into the scheme rather
than from the sale or consumption of products.
Claiming that the trader is about to cease trading or move premises when he is
Claiming that products are able to facilitate winning in games of chance.
Falsely claiming that a product is able to cure illnesses, dysfunction or
Passing on materially inaccurate information on market conditions or on the
possibility of finding the product, with the intention of inducing the consumer to
acquire the product at conditions less favourable than normal market conditions.
Claiming in a commercial practice to offer a competition or prize promotion
without awarding the prizes described or a reasonable equivalent.
Describing a product as "gratis", "free", "without charge" or similar if the
consumer has to pay anything other than the unavoidable cost of responding to the
commercial practice and collecting or paying for delivery of the item.
Including in marketing material an invoice or similar document seeking payment
which gives the consumer the impression that he has already ordered the marketed
product when he has not.
Falsely claiming or creating the impression that the trader is not acting for
purposes relating to his trade, business, craft or profession, or falsely representing
oneself as a consumer.
Creating the false impression that after-sales service in relation to a product is
available in a Member State other than the one in which the product is sold.
iii) (1 x 1 mark)
Action a consumer can take if an advertisement is found to be misleading:
The consumer should immediately report the case to the Malta Competition and
Consumer Affairs Authority, a local entity which receives such complaints.
(1 x 1 mark)
The role of the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority in such a
The Authority will check the reported advertisement and if it is found that the
advertisement was misleading, it will ask the company making the advertisement to
modify it. Should the company not regulate itself as proposed by the Authority, the
Authority can take ulterior action as stipulated in the Consumer Affairs Act.
The remedies which are provided by the Consumer Affairs Act to combat misleading
advertising are three:
• The criminal penalty for a misleading advertisement is a fine between €466
(Lm200) and €4660 (Lm2,000).
• Consumer associations have the right to challenge misleading adverts.
• The Director of Consumer Affairs can prohibit the issuance of misleading
adverts or order their removal.
iv) (2 x 0.5 mark for alternative information source)
(4 x 0.5 mark for the advantages of each information source)
(4 x 0.5 mark for the disadvantages of each information source)
Alternative information methods on rotary mops including advantages and
disadvantages of each method:
Source of
• A personal touch to the encounter is • If the showroom personnel are
often experienced.
good salespeople, the consumer
a • Advice can be given on the particular
can be forced to buy items without
needing or being truly pleased with
showroom and
situation of the consumer.
what is on offer.
to • Once the consumer is at the
Consumer may feel uneasy not
buying the goods on offer after
show him/her other models available.
being given a lot of attention by the
sales personnel.
• The latest detailed information can be • The company may not keep the
provided on all the services/goods
offered by the company.
information and maybe special
offers would not be advertised on
• The consumer can compare and
the website.
contrast the goods offered by other
• There is no personal contact and
companies on other websites.
hence advice cannot be given there
• The
and then.
advertisement at his/her own leisure.
• The consumer can opt to print the • If item is purchased over the
internet, consumer may not be so
relevant material on the goods that
pleased with the goods once
interest him/her for future use.
received or used.
• The consumer will have black on
white record of what is advertised and
ensure that is what s/he is given.
• Further clarifications can be obtained,
simply by writing an email to the
company, which normally is very
prompt to answer prospective
• Purchases can be made directly from
consumer’s own personal computer
and delivered to his/her doorstep.
• If the good is purchased over the
internet, the consumer has a 15-day
cooling off period, in which s/he may
decide to cancel the order.
v) Eco-related labels found on packaging of laptop and a printer and other eco-related
(3 x 1 mark)
Eco-related labels and explanation
• Energy star certified - ENERGY STAR is the symbol for energy efficiency
helping all consumers to save money and protect the environment through energyefficient products and practices. The ENERGY STAR label was established to:
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants caused by the
inefficient use of energy; and make it easy for consumers to identify and
purchase energy-efficient products that offer savings on energy bills without
sacrificing performance, features, and comfort.
Recycle logo - This symbol and variations of recycling is used to designate
recyclable materials. It is composed of three chasing arrows that form a
continuous loop.
• The Green dot symbol - The basic idea of the Green Dot is that consumers who
see the logo know that the manufacturer of the product contributes to the cost of
recovery and recycling.
• Green label - In April 1992 the European Community introduced the Ecolabelling scheme. The aim was to encourage manufacturers to produce products
with reduced environmental impact and to provide customers with better
information on the environmental performance e.g. energy consumption, of
products. Those awarded the label must conform to community health, safety and
environmental requirements. Manufacturers wanting to use the eco-label pay a fee
to have their products assessed.
(6 x 0.5 marks)
Environment-friendly features:
• Energy consumption: the wattage the laptop and printer have
• The possibility of recharging the laptop using solar energy.
• Any inbuilt energy saving features.
• Recyclable material used.
• Laptops which have the least possible chemicals. There are many hazardous
chemicals currently used in laptop technology. Many companies claim to have
removed up to 37 hazardous chemicals, including both lead and mercury – from
their products. The current WEEE directives only ask for 6 to be removed.
• Whether parts of the laptop/printer can be dismantled/reused or recycled after its
• The possibility of using refillable ink cartridges for the printer.
• Whether recycled paper can be used in the printer.
• Whether the printer can print on both sides of the paper, having the facility of
inbuilt duplex printing.
• Any emissions of toxic substances when in use. (Example ozone from laser
Question 6
i) (2 x 1 mark)
Definition of rights and responsibilities of consumers and sellers/service providers.
Rights – By law consumers are entitled to a suitable protection when buying a
good or service if this good/service proves to be faulty. Without rights consumers
have little ground on which to defend themselves against faulty or defective
products, or against misleading or deceptive advertising methods.
(Consumer rights were first presented in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy to
the United States Congress in which he extolled four basic consumer rights, later
called The Consumer Bill of Rights. In 1985, the concept of consumer rights was
endorsed by the United Nations through the United Nations Guidelines for
Consumer Protection, which expands them to included eight basic rights).
Responsibilities – By law consumers are accountable for their purchases of goods
or services. A responsible consumer is a person who exercises his/her discretion
with the full awareness of the implication of his/her right to choice, and is
accountable or answerable to other consumers and to the environment for his/her
purchase decisions.
(2 x 0.5 mark), (2 x 0.5 mark)
Impact of rights and responsibilities on consumers and sellers/service providers.
Impact of rights
Sellers/Service providers
• Consumer makes informed and Sellers/service providers are
better choices for him/her, bound to give the best
the service possible, inform and
not mislead customers, be
honest and sell good and
• Get the best value for their safe products.
• Can complain if they are not
satisfied with the good or
of Consumer
him/herself, his/her family other
consumers and the environment for
his/her purchase decisions.
Sellers/service providers are
protected from dishonest
consumers who try to take
advantage of an unfortunate
ii) (3 x 1 mark)
Rights and explanation of each:
The right to satisfaction of basic needs - To have access to basic, essential
goods and services: adequate food, clothing, shelter, health care, education, public
utilities, water and sanitation.
The right to safety - To be protected against products, production processes and
services which are hazardous to health or life.
The right to be informed - To be given the facts needed to make an informed
choice, and to be protected against dishonest or misleading advertising and
The right to choose - To be able to select from a range of products and services,
offered at competitive prices with an assurance of satisfactory quality.
The right to be heard - To have consumer interests represented in the making
and execution of government policy, and in the development of products and
The right to consumer education - To acquire knowledge and skills needed to
make informed, confident choices about goods and services, while being aware of
basic consumer rights and responsibilities and how to act on them.
The right to a healthy environment -To live and work in an environment which
is non-threatening to the well-being of present and future generations.
(3 x 1 mark)
Responsibilities and explanation of each:
The responsibility to be aware of the quality and safety of goods and services
before purchasing, by researching the goods and services and inspecting them
before purchase.
The responsibility to gather all the information and facts available about a product
or service, as well as to keep abreast of changes and innovations in the
The responsibility to think independently and make choices about well considered
needs and wants, rather than influencing oneself by friends’ and general public
The responsibility to speak out, to inform manufacturers and governments of
needs and wants in order for better goods and services are researched and
developed and later offered to consumers.
The responsibility to complain and inform business and other consumers of
dissatisfaction with a product or service in a fair and honest manner so that
matters are rectified to both the consumer and the manufacturer’s satisfaction.
The responsibility to be an ethical consumer and to be fair by not engaging in
dishonest practices which cost all consumers money.
The responsibility to respect the environment and avoid waste, littering and
contribution to pollution.
iii) (1 x 1 mark)
Explaining right to redress:
The right to redress - To receive a fair settlement of just claims, including
compensation for misrepresentation, shoddy goods or unsatisfactory services.
(3 x 1 mark)
Methods of redress:
Over the phone or at the retail outlet or via a letter:
If a consumer has a problem with a purchased item/service the customer can
go back to the person selling the goods or providing the service and complain.
Most traders want the goodwill of their customers and will sort the problem
out. Some traders are more difficult to deal with. Some steps to follow are:
o Before making a complaint a customer should always check out his/her
o Collect anything written down which will help prove what to say e.g. a
receipt which proves that the goods were bought from that specific shop
on a certain date.
o List the facts e.g. the date, time, anything the trader or assistant said about
the goods or service.
o If the goods were a gift the trader can choose to deal only with the person
who bought the gift. The customer should ask the person who gave out the
gift if they are willing to complain on their behalf. The trader will want to
see the receipt.
o The customer may find it better to ask a friend to accompany him/her both
for support and as witness.
o The customer should decide what the problem is and what he/she wants
done about it before filing the complaint e.g. the strap on new shoes has
broken because the stitching has come undone. The customer may decide
that he would be happy to have it neatly re-stitched, but only if they can do
it within two weeks.
o The customer should decide and rehearse what will be said.
o The customer should be polite, but firm and clear – some traders have a
policy of refunding the money and the assistant will sort the problem out.
o If the customer has no success with the assistant ask to speak to a manager
or owner of the business – don’t be put off by an assistant.
o Always explain the problem e.g. – ‘I Bought this pair of shoes here two
weeks ago and now the strap has broken’.
o The customer should tell the trader what he/she expectse.g. ‘If you can do
the job within two weeks I want the strap neatly repaired. Otherwise I
want my money back please’.
o The customer should not get into arguments about whose fault the
problem is, but should remain calm and composed.If the complaint cannot
be resolved, the consumer should leave and write a letter to the manager of
the establishment to put the complaint on a more formal basis.
Through the Consumer and Competition Division:
Prior to presenting the claim before the Tribunal, a consumer should refer the
claim to the Director for Consumer Affairs or a registered consumer
association, who would then try to help the consumer to reach an amicable
agreement with the other party on the issues in dispute within fifteen (15)
working days. If no agreement is reached, the consumer may then present a
claim to the Consumer Claims Tribunal which will decide on all pending
A claim or a counter-claim before the Tribunal is made by filling a form
known as a "Notice of Claim (or Counter-Claim)". This form can be obtained
from the Registry of the Tribunal. After the consumer presents a claim before
the Tribunal, the other party will be notified. If the other party disputes the
claim, the Secretary will then appoint a date, time and place, when the hearing
before the Arbiter is to be held. The Secretary will inform the consumer and
the other party with regards to the date in question.
At the hearing, each person involved in the dispute will state the facts of the
case. The consumer should bring any letters, invoices, bills, sales slips,
contracts, photographs, witnesses and anything else which may help establish
the facts concerning the dispute. The consumer can also engage a lawyer to
present the case; however the whole scope of the Consumer Claims Tribunal
is to enable the consumer to state his/her case without the need of having a
Tribunal hearings are informal and are heard in a room specifically designated
for the purpose. The Arbiter will normally ask the claimant to give his version
of the dispute first. The other party will then be asked to state its version. The
claimant will need to show the Arbiter any documents related to the dispute.
The Arbiter will also require information from any witnesses which can help
clarify the facts. The Arbiter may also ask questions to each party and to their
witnesses. After the hearing the Arbiter will deliver his decision in writing.
An appeal against a decision by the Tribunal can only be made if the Tribunal,
during the hearing of the case, would have acted in violation of the principles
of natural justice and, as a result seriously prejudiced the rights of any party.
In such a case one has 20 days from the date of the decision of the Tribunal to
lodge an appeal before the Court of Appeal.
Through special service/column offered by local newspapers:
Both Consumer Association and the Consumer Affairs Department offer this
service whereby consumers can address their complaints to these
organisations where legal advice and support is given accordingly. When
writing a letter of complaint, consumers should:
o Include their name, address, and home and work phone numbers.
o Type the letter if possible. If it is handwritten, then it has to be neat and
easy to read.
o The letter should be brief and to the point. All important facts about the
purchase, including the date and place and any information about the
product or service such as serial or model numbers or specific type of
service should be given.
o Customers should state exactly what he/she want to be done about the
problem and how long the consumer is willing to wait to get it resolved. It
is important for the customer to be reasonable.
o Include all documents regarding the problem. Consumers should be sure
to send COPIES, not originals.
o Consumers should keep a copy of the letter for his/her records.
Through Consumer Association - The third activity that the Consumers’
Association is engaged into is client services. The basic aim is to get redress
for aggrieved consumers.
iv) (3 x 2 marks – 1 mark for definition and 1 mark for function)
Definition and function of Consumer Claims Tribunal, Consumer Association and
European Consumer Centre (ECC Malta):
The Consumer Claims Tribunal – this is the place where a consumer can obtain
quick and inexpensive redress for his/her claims.
A consumer may file a claim before the Tribunal if a consumer, bought or hired
goods or services from a trader for personal or family’s needs and would require
to lodge a claim regarding any damages, after failing to reach an amicable
agreement with the trader.
The Tribunal may hear claims about the hire or purchase of goods or services if
the value of the claim for compensation does not exceed the sum of €3494.06. It
is normally the consumer who presents a claim before the Tribunal. However, the
law also states that the Tribunal may hear and decide with regards to:
o any counter-claim by a trader if the consumer had made a claim against
that same trader before the Tribunal;
o a case commenced before a Court, and which later by agreement between
the consumer and the trader, is referred for a hearing before the Tribunal.
The Tribunal may also award the consumer up to €232.94 compensation for
'moral damages' caused by any pain, distress, anxiety and inconvenience which
the consumer might have suffered because of the facts of the case under
examination. Furthermore, when a claim in defence offered is considered
manifestly frivolous and vexatious, the Tribunal may condemn the offending
party to pay the other party a penalty of not more than €116.47.
Consumer Association - The Consumers’ Association was set up in 1982 and it
is the only consumers’ association on the Island. It is recognised under the
Consumers’ Affairs Act of 1994. It is a voluntary organisation and all of its
officials are elected annually. It is financed solely on membership fees. The
membership fee is nominal (€2.33 yearly) and the association tries to cater for
those with low education, pensioners and those with special needs. No assistance
is received from the government.
The Consumers’ Association has 4 main principal areas of activity:
1. It acts as a representative for the local consumers. It represents the local
consumers on several national Boards amongst them the Consumers’ Affairs
Council which is a national board whose primary function is to advise the
Minister responsible for consumer affairs on policy and legislation. The
association also represent consumers on other boards mainly Users’ Boards of
Public Utilities. It also represents the local consumers in international fora.
2. The second area of activity is educating the consumers in order for them to
make good choices and be aware of their rights. The Consumers’ Association
is instrumental in making the concept of consumer understood and making
business owners accept that consumers have rights.The consumers’
association has a weekly page in a local newspaper, and have used radio
programmes to educate the consumers at large.
3. The third activity that the Consumers’ Association is engaged into is client
services. The basic aim is to get redress for aggrieved consumers.
4. The last area of activity is being a pressure group. The association has been
instrumental in bringing about two new pieces of legislation. However, they
have also contributed greatly in pushing forward the consumers' agenda with
all government departments. The association also reviews and comments on
new legislation and periodically, they also issue press releases to the local
media as a form of added pressure whenever needed.
European Consumer Centre - ECC Malta provides information and assistance
when you purchase goods or services from another EU Member State.
ECC Malta is the designated information point for service recipients, who are
consumers, for the purposes of the Services Directive.
What this means is that ECC Malta is to provide information to service recipients
on legal requirements applicable to service activities in other Member States and
also on available means of redress and contact details of organisations which can
provide assistance. In order to provide this information ECC Malta co-operates
with other service information points in other EU Member States as well as a
number of competent authorities in Malta in order to obtain and be able to provide
the relevant information to consumers.
Paper 2
(20 marks each question)
Question 1
(4 x 0.5 marks)
Chemical elements found in all carbohydrates and their ratio to one another:
Carbon, Hydrogen and Oxygen
Ratio: 1: 2: 1
ii) (1 x 1 mark)
Explanation of how disaccharides are formed:
Disaccharides are formed when two monosaccharides are joined together and a
molecule of water is removed.
(6 x 0.5 marks)
Three examples of disaccharide formation:
(2 x 0.5 marks)
The enzymes responsible for dissaccharides’ chemical breakdown:
Enzyme responsible for
chemical breakdown
iii) (4 X 2 marks)
Nutritional explanation of the following statements:
Younger teenagers require a higher intake of carbohydrates, than those
reaching adulthood.
As teenagers reach adulthood, the basal energy needs for maintaining the body's
physiological functions (basal metabolic rate, BMR) stabilize, and so energy
requirements also stabilize. BMR is defined as the energy required by the body to
keep functioning. These functions include the pumping of blood by the heart,
respiration, kidney function, and maintaining muscle tone and a constant body
temperature, among others. BMR is directly related to the amount of lean body
muscle mass, size, and gender. Physical activity especially weight-training
exercise,helps increase and maintain lean body mass.
It is very important to reduce one's energy intake (including carbohydrate intake) at
the onset of adulthood, and to make sure that all of one's nutritional needs are met.
This can be accomplished by making sure that an adequate amount of energy is
consumed (this will vary by body weight, degree of physical fitness, and muscle vs.
body fat), and that this amount of energy is adjusted to one's level of physical activity.
Foods that are chosen to provide the energy must be highly nutritious, containing high
amounts of essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and essential proteins.
Athletes need to consume a good amount of carbohydrate before a
Athletes need to eat a diet high in carbohydrates to keep their glycogen stores full.
The human body is able to store carbohydrates for energy use in the liver and the
muscles in the form of a substance known as glycogen. This carbohydrate store is
basically human "starch" and is able to be quickly broken down to fuel the muscles
during high intensity exercise (muscle glycogen) and to maintain blood glucose levels
(liver glycogen). Eating high carbohydrate meals prior to a marathon ensures a good
glycogen store which will prevent fatigue.
The consumption of dietary fibre can reduce constipation and avoid other
diet-related diseases.
The main action of dietary fibre is to change the nature of the contents of the
gastrointestinal tract, and to change how other nutrients and chemicals are absorbed.
Soluble fibre binds to bile acids in the small intestine, making them less likely to
enter the body; this in turn lowers cholesterol levels in the blood.
Soluble fibre also attenuates the absorption of sugar, reduces sugar response after
eating, normalizes blood lipid levels and, once fermented in the colon, produces
short-chain fatty acids as byproducts with wide-ranging physiological activities.
Although insoluble fibre is associated with reduced diabetes risk, the mechanism by
which this occurs is unknown.
Dietary fibre also speeds the passage of foods through the digestive system and so
facilitates regular defecation. It also adds bulk to the stools and so alleviates
Studies have also shown that dietary fibre balances intestinal pH and stimulates
intestinal fermentation production of short-chain fatty acids, which in turn may
reduce risk of colorectal cancer.
Diabetic individuals should consume carbohydrates that have a low
glycaemic index.
All carbohydrates increase blood sugar levels (and so have a glycaemic index) and
therefore cause insulin to be released from the pancreas in order to control the amount
of glucose in the blood. The more glucose that has been made available in the blood,
the more insulin is released to control it. The relative efficiency with which
carbohydrates do this is known as the glycaemic index. So if the diabetic individual
consumes food that has a low glycaemic index, the amount of insulin required to
metabolise the blood sugar level is lower and this prevents creating sudden spikes that
can overwhelm an already overworked insulin-producing pancreas.
iv) (10 X 0.5marks)
Digestion and absorption of carbohydrates in a cereal bar.
In the mouth
The enzyme amylase, which is contained in saliva, mixes with food
products and breaks some starches into smaller units.
Once the carbohydrates reach the acidic environment of the stomach,
the amylase is inactivated.
Small Intestine
After the carbohydrates have passed through the stomach and into the
small intestine, key digestive enzymes are secreted from the pancreas
and the small intestine where most digestion and absorption occurs.
Pancreatic amylase breaks starch into disaccharides and small
Enzymes from the cells of the small-intestinal wall break any
remaining disaccharides into their monosaccharide components.
Large Intestine
Dietary fibre is not digested by the small intestine; instead, it passes
to the colon unchanged.
Sugars such as glucose, galactose and fructose that are found naturally in the cereal bar or
are produced by the breakdown of polysaccharides, enter into absorptive intestinal cells.
After absorption, they are transported to the liver where galactose and fructose are
converted to glucose and released into the bloodstream.
The glucose may be sent directly to organs that need energy, where it may be transformed
into glycogen (in a process called glycogenesis) for storage in the liver or muscles, or it
may be converted to and stored as fat.
Question 2
i) (1 mark)
Identification of anti-oxidants vitamins:
Beta-carotene, Ascorbic Acid and Tocopherol.
(1 mark)
Role of antioxidants in the body:
Antioxidants significantly decrease the adverse effects of free radicals on normal
physiological functions in the human body. Normally, when a chain reaction takes
place, bonds break and re-form to form new stable compounds. However, sometimes
compounds split leaving a molecule with an odd, unpaired electron resulting into free
radicals. Free radicals are highly unstable so they quickly react with other
compounds, forming more free radicals in a chain reaction.
ii) (3 x 1 mark, 3 x 1 mark, 3 x 1 mark)
Role, deficiency and food sources:
Helps maintain the
Participates in protein
synthesis and cell
Supports reproduction
(in men – participates
Supports bone and
tooth growth.
Co-factor in collagen
Co-factor in thyroxin
Co-factor in amino
acid metabolism.
Strengthens resistance
to infection.
Helps in absorption of
Stabilisation of cell
polyunsaturated fatty
acids (PUFA) and
vitamin A.
some symptoms
are dry hair, dry
skin, and brittle
night vision or a
decreased ability
to see in poorly lit
spots on the skin,
soft and spongy
gums vulnerable to
bleeding, painful
 Erythrocyte
(breakage of
 Neuromuscular
dysfunction (in
Food sources
Spinach, broccoli,
sweet potatoes and
Any citrus fruit,
vegetables, green
leafy vegetables,
tomatoes, potatoes,
papayas, mangoes.
plant oils, green
leafy vegetables,
wheat germ, whole
grains, liver, egg
yolks, nuts, seeds.
iii) (1 x 1 mark)
Definition of precursor:
Precursor is a compound that can be converted into an active vitamin.
(1 mark)
Different forms of vitamin A:
Three different forms of Vitamin A are active in the body: retinol, retinal and retinoic
acid. Collectively, these compounds are known as retinoids.
Caretinoids are pigments commonly found in plants and animals, some of which have
vitamin A activity. The caretinoid with the greatest vitamin A activity is betacarotene.
iv) (3 x 1 mark)
Conversion of different forms of vitamin A in the body:
Retinoids - Foods derived from animals provide retinyl esters that are easily
converted to retinol in the intestine.
Caretinoids - Foods derived from plants provide carotenoids such as betacarotene, some of which have vitamin A activity. Beta-carotene can be split to
form retinol in the intestine and liver. Beta-carotene’s absorption and
conversion are less efficient than those of the retinoids.
The cells can convert retinol and retinal to the other active forms of vitamin A
as needed. The conversion of retinol to retinal is reversible, but the conversion
of retinal to retinoic acid is irreversible.
v) (1 x 2 marks)
Vitamin D – Calcium absorption in young children:
The stomach’s acidity helps to keep calcium soluble, and vitamin D helps to make the
calcium-binding protein needed for absorption. Whenever calcium is needed, the
body increases its production of the calcium-binding protein to improve calcium
absorption. Growing children absorb 50 to 60% of the calcium they consume. When
growth slows or stops, absorption decreases to the adult level of about 30%.
(1 x 2 marks)
Vitamin C – Iron absorption in vegans:
Vitamin C enhances non-haeme iron absorption from foods eaten in the same meal by
capturing iron and keeping it in the reduced ferrous form, ready for absorption. Nonhaeme iron is the only type of iron a vegan can consume since it comes both from
plants and animals. Though haeme iron accounts for a small proportion of the intake,
it is well absorbed, whilst only 10% of the non-haeme iron is absorbed when not
enhanced by Vitamin C.
Question 3
i) (1 x 1 mark)
Definition of hypertension
Hypertension is higher-than-normal blood pressure. Hypertension that develops
without an identifiable cause is known as essential or primary hypertension;
hypertension that is caused by a specific disorder e.g. kidney diseases is known as
secondary hypertension.
(2 X 1 marks)
Aetiology of hypertension:
Blood flow to organs and the rest of the body is restricted due to atherosclerosis, a
condition characterised by plaque (made up from fat streaks which are hardened with
minerals) formation along the inner walls of the arteries. Plaque stiffens the arteries
and narrows the passage through them. The progression of atherosclerosis in the
arteries may restrict blood flow to the heart muscle, and limit the delivery of oxygen.
This induces the heart to pump extra hard to push the blood against resistant arteries,
thus increasing the blood pressure in the arteries. Hypertension worsens
atherosclerosis by mechanically injuring the artery linings and accelerating plaque
formation. In return, plaque induces a further rise in blood pressure, intensifying the
ii) (4 X 0.5 marks)
Symptoms that may be experienced by individuals with high blood pressure:
Blurred vision
Chest pain
Shortness of breath.
(1 x 1 mark)
Difference between systolic and diastolic readings:
Whilst the systolic (the top number) measures the pressure in the arteries when the
heart beats (when the heart muscle contracts), the diastolic (bottom number,
measures the pressure in the arteries between heartbeats (when the heart muscle is
resting between beats and refilling with blood).
iii) (4 X 0.5 marks)
Bodily damage that can be experienced if the condition of hypertension is not
identified and treated
Strain on the heart’s pump, the left ventricle, can enlarge and weaken it, until it
causes a heart failure.
Constant high pressure in an artery may cause it to gradually balloon out, and
eventually burst. This is known as aneurysm.
Undetected aneurysms can lead to massive bleeding and death, especially if a
major vessel like the aorta is affected.
Aneurysms in the small arteries of the brain may lead to a stroke.
Aneurysms in the eye can lead to blindness.
Kidney disease may result when the heart is unable to pump enough blood
through them.
iv) Two dietary and two non-dietary measures:
(2 x 0.5 mark)
Dietary Measures:
Weight control
Monitor and control alcohol intake
Reduce sodium/salt intake
Reduce saturated fat intake
Increase fibre intake from fruits and vegetables
(2 x 0.5 mark)
Non-Dietary Measures:
Physical activity
Obtain regular prenatal medical care
No smoking
Reduce stress
Drug therapy after medical consultation
v) (5 X 1 mark for nutrient dietary increases with explanation)
(10 X 0.5 marks for the suitable food items)
Dietary changes required during pregnancy giving specific health-related reasons
Nutrient needs
Health-related reason
Suitable food items for lactovegetarian mother
Increase in protein
 For the growth (cell 
formation) of the unborn
Ensure adequate
folic acid intake
 Needed for the correct
development of the brain
and the nervous system in
the foetus.
 Will prevent miscarriage,
slow growth, malformations
in the foetus (e.g. Neural
Tube Defects, spina bifida)
and premature birth.
 To aid the absorption of
calcium and form strong
bones and teeth in the
unborn child.
 Also
osteomalacia in the mother.
Increased intake of
vitamin D
Increased calcium
 For the development of the
skeleton (strong bones and
teeth) in the unborn child.
 To prevent the mother
losing calcium from her
skeleton and teeth.
Milk and milk products
(no soft cheeses)
Textured Vegetable
Mixture of grains and nuts
Green leafy vegetables
Fortified breakfast cereals
Sunflower seeds
Milk products (no soft
Fortified foods such as
cereals and powdered milk
Milk and milk products
(no soft cheese)
Fortified breakfast cereals
Beans and peas
Sesame seeds
Nuts: almonds, brazil nuts
Increased iron intake  To have a good supply of 
blood for the mother, the 
unborn child and placenta.
Ensure adequate
intake of essential
fatty acids
 These are needed by the 
foetus for brain growth and 
cell division.
Pumpkin seeds
Sunflower seeds
Whole meal/ whole grain
Fortified cereals
Nuts, particularly walnuts
Flax seeds
Vegetable oils, like canola
oil and soyabean oil.
Question 4
i) (4 X 1 mark each)
Explanation of, and highlighting the importance of each psychological, technological,
social and economic factors affecting food choice.
 Mass media - eating disorders said to be made more common by the peer pressure
put on by skinny role models and the constant flow of quick fix diets offered
daily in magazines and newspapers.
 Adverts - Constant adverts telling people that their body needs the product to
remain healthy e.g. functional foods. Advertisements also depict certain food as a
group fun activity and hence that particular food is consumed to obtain such fun
Bullying - To be fat can be hard for some people and so this may result in dieting
and may lead to an obsession with controlling their weight (e.g. Anorexia)
 Compulsive eating disorders – This is a mental disorder where compulsive
overeaters will typically eat when they are not hungry, spend excessive amounts
of time and thought devoted to food, and secretly plan or fantasize about eating
alone. Compulsive overeating often leads to weight gain and obesity, but not
everyone who is obese is also a compulsive overeater. In addition to binge eating,
compulsive overeaters also engage in grazing behaviour, during which they
return to pick at food over and over throughout the day. This, results in a large
overall number of kilocalories consumed even if the quantities eaten at any one
time may be small. When a compulsive eater overeats primarily through binging,
she can be said to have binge eating disorder. Where there is continuous
overeating but no binging, then the sufferer has compulsive overeating disorder.
 Self esteem – A person with low-self esteem has a higher risk for compulsive
eating disorders and comfort eating. Self-esteem is a term in psychology to reflect
a person's overall evaluation or appraisal of his or her own worth. It encompasses
beliefs (for example, "I am competent", "I am worthy") and emotions such as
triumph, despair, pride and shame. If a person feels negative about him/herself
s/he is more inclined to choose food which may make them feel good at that time
– usually food high in fat and sugar.
 Stress - Psychological stress is a common feature of modern life and can modify
behaviours that affect health, such as physical activity, smoking or food choice.
The influence of stress on food choice is complex not least because of the various
types of stress one can experience. The effect of stress on food intake depends on
the individual, the stressor and the circumstances. In general, some people eat
more and some eat less than normal when experiencing stress. The proposed
mechanisms for stress induced changes in eating and food choice are
motivational differences (reduced concern about weight control), physiological
(reduced appetite caused by the processes associated with stress) and practical
changes in eating opportunities, food availability and meal preparation. Studies
also suggest that if work stress is prolonged or frequent, then adverse dietary
changes could result, increasing the possibility of weight gain and consequently
cardiovascular risk.
 Mood - It is recognised that food influences our mood and that mood has a strong
influence over our choice of food. The influence of food on mood is related in
part to attitudes towards particular foods. The ambivalent relationship with food –
wanting to enjoy it but conscious of weight gain is a struggle experienced by
many. Dieters, people with high restraint and some women report feeling guilty
because of not eating what they think they should. Moreover, attempts to restrict
intake of certain foods can increase the desire for these particular foods, leading
to what are described as food cravings. Women more commonly report food
cravings than do men. Depressed mood appears to influence the severity of these
cravings. Reports of food cravings are also more common in the premenstrual
phase, a time when total food intake increases and a parallel change in basal
metabolic rate occurs. Thus, mood and stress can influence food choice behaviour
and possibly short and long term responses to dietary intervention.
Hybrid seeds – Hybrid seeds are a result of special breeding techniques where
these seeds are crossed with 2 different parent varieties. The advantages of using
hybrid seeds is that the resulting plant and fruit is often stronger and more
resistant to disease. The fruit of the plant tends to be more uniform in shape, ripen
at the same time, has better keeping qualities, and sometimes can be harvested
early. The disadvantages of using hybrid seeds is that the seeds from that plant
used the previous year cannot be saved and used in the future years. This means
that the farmer has to purchase new seeds each year. In addition hybrid seeds are
more expensive that non-hybrid seeds.
Food engineering – It is a multidisciplinary field of applied physical sciences
which combines science, microbiology, and engineering education for food and
related industries. Food engineering includes, but is not limited to, the application
of agricultural engineering, mechanical engineering and chemical engineering
principles to food materials. Food engineers provide the technological knowledge
transfer essential to the cost-effective production and commercialization of food
products and services.
Food preservation - Methods of preparing food so that it can be stored for future
use. Because most foods remain edible for only a brief period of time, people
since the earliest ages have experimented with methods for successful food
preservation. Among the products of early food conservation were cheese and
butter, raisins, pemmican, sausage, bacon, and grain. Nowadays a much wider
variety of food is preserved as methods of preservation moved from drying and
heating to exclusion of air, irradiation, and addition of preservatives.
Genetically modified food - Meat and edible plants modified through genetic
engineering. Although humans have genetically modified animal and plants since
the beginning of civilization, they did it through selective breeding possible only
within the same species through natural reproduction over decades or centuries.
Modern techniques, however, can transfer genetic material from one organism to
another to instantly create utterly different variants. Since alien genes are not
welcomed by the existing genes, suppressive techniques must be used to force the
animal or plant to accept them. Such artificially mutated foods are a source of
unresolved controversy over the uncertainty of their long-term effects on humans
and food chains.
 Cost - There is no doubt that the cost of food is a primary determinant of food
choice. Whether cost is prohibitive depends fundamentally on a person's income
and socio-economic status. Low-income groups have a greater tendency to
consume unbalanced diets and in particular have low intakes of fruit and
vegetables. However, access to more money does not automatically equate to a
better quality diet but the range of foods from which one can choose should
Accessibility – Availability and position of shops is another important physical
factor influencing food choice, which is dependent on resources such as transport
and geographical location. Healthy food tends to be more expensive when
available within towns and cities compared to supermarkets on the outskirts.
However, improving access alone does not increase purchase of additional fruit
and vegetables, which are still regarded as prohibitively expensive.
Education and knowledge - Studies indicate that the level of education can
influence dietary behaviour during adulthood. In contrast, nutrition knowledge
and good dietary habits are not strongly correlated. This is because knowledge
about health does not lead to direct action when individuals are unsure how to
apply their knowledge. Furthermore, information disseminated on nutrition comes
from a variety of sources and is viewed as conflicting or is mistrusted, which
discourages motivation to change. Thus, it is important to convey accurate and
consistent messages through various media, on food packages and of course via
health professionals.
 Influence of social class - What people eat is formed and constrained by
circumstances that are essentially social and cultural. Population studies show
there are clear differences in social classes with regard to food and nutrient
intakes. Poor diets can result in under (micronutrients deficiency) and overnutrition (energy over consumption resulting in overweight and obesity);
problems that face different sectors of society, requiring different levels of
expertise and methods of intervention.
Cultural influences - Such influences lead to the difference in the habitual
consumption of certain foods and in traditions of preparation, and in certain cases
can lead to restrictions such as exclusion of meat and milk from the diet. Cultural
influences are however amenable to change; when moving to a new country
individuals often adopt particular food habits of the local culture.
Social context - Social influences on food intake refer to the impact that one or
more persons have on the eating behaviour of others, either direct (buying food)
or indirect (learn from peer's behaviour), either conscious (transfer of beliefs) or
subconscious. Even when eating alone, food choice is influenced by social factors
because attitudes and habits develop through the interaction with others.
However, quantifying the social influences on food intake is difficult because the
influences that people have on the eating behaviour of others are not limited to
one type and people are not necessarily aware of the social influences that are
exerted on their eating behaviour.
Social support – This can have a beneficial effect on food choices and healthful
dietary change. Social support from within the household and from co-workers
was positively associated with improvements in fruit and vegetable consumption
and with the preparative stage of improving eating habits, respectively. Social
support may enhance health promotion through fostering a sense of group
belonging and helping people to be more competent and self-efficacious.
The family – The family itself is widely recognised as being significant in food
decisions. Research shows the shaping of food choices taking place in the home.
Because family and friends can be a source of encouragement in making and
sustaining dietary change, adopting dietary strategies which are acceptable to
them may benefit the individual whilst also having an effect on the eating habits
of others.
Social setting - Although the majority of food is eaten in the home, an increasing
proportion is eaten outside the home, e.g. in schools, at work and in restaurants.
The venue in which food is eaten can affect food choice, particularly in terms of
what foods are on offer. The availability of healthy food at home and 'away from
home' increases the consumption of such foods. However, access to healthy food
options is limited in many work/school environments. This is particularly true for
those with irregular hours or with particular requirements, e.g. vegetarians. With
the majority of adult women and men in employment, the influence of work on
health behaviours such as food choices is an important area of investigation.
ii) (4 x 0.5 mark for each cause, 4 x 1 mark for each implication)
Causes and implications of changing dietary habits:
Dietary shifts - Diets have shifted far more dramatically in urban than in rural
areas. This means that dietary habit changed according to this urban shift. People
tend to eat less fruits and vegetables as they became more expensive and it is
more time consuming to prepare dinners from scratch. It is easier to buy readymade meals which are aimed for people who have busy schedules and long hours
of work. This urban shift also brought about critical socio demographic issues
such as:
o rapid reductions in fertility that have speeded shifts in age distribution;
o economic changes, in particular increased income and income inequality,
that appear to define changes in many regions of the developing world.
Urbanization - The structure of diet has shifted markedly as populations have
urbanized over the years. This left less people to work in fields. Given that
people are more focused on careers and work longer hours in addition to greater
pace in lifestyles, food production became more focused on crops which are
versatile and easily prepared and cooked.
Structural shifts in income-diet relationships - There are two types of behavioural
change. One relates to the shift in the society toward the educated, rich, or urban.
Here people may buy different types of commodities than people on lower
income. The other relates to the way people with different characteristics behave,
particularly their economic behaviour. This means that at the same level of
education or income, a person might buy different amounts or types of
commodities at different points in time. This suggests that the demand pattern for
food has changed, so that for the same income level, patterns of demand are
significantly different from others with the same income or changed over the
years. The explosion in access to goods and exposure to mass media may well
have created this situation.
Mass media - There is no doubt that access to modern mass media has grown very
rapidly. It is most useful to look at the proportion of households in a country that
own television sets. In 1970s and 1980s there was no cable system in Malta thus
offering a limited offer of different channels mostly all state-owned so adverts
were minimal. Lack of adverts means that less people were influenced by new
products so people had limited choices.
Health effects - The BMI-disease relationships have been found to vary between
major Asian and other subpopulation groups and those of European background.
This can mean that Asian diets result in different diet-related disorders than that
of European diets. It could also be that the body composition and other
unmeasured racial and ethnic factors affect susceptibility to nutrition-related
diseases. Another reason might also be that previous disease patterns (such as the
presence of malaria or other tropical diseases) have predisposed the population to
certain problems.
Historical Nutrition Patterns - Human diet and activity patterns and nutritional
status have undergone a sequence of major shifts, which can be defined as broad
patterns of food use and of corresponding nutrition-related diseases. The pace of
dietary and activity change appears to have accelerated over the years, albeit to
varying degrees in different regions of the world. Dietary and activity changes
have been paralleled by major changes in health status, as well as by major
demographic and socioeconomic changes. Obesity emerges early among these
shifting conditions, as does the level and age composition of morbidity and
Receding famine - In this stage, the consumption of fruits, vegetables, and animal
protein increases, and starchy staples become less important in the diet. Most of
Europe had made great progress in reducing chronic hunger and famines, but only
in the last 40 years did these changes become widespread, leading to marked
shifts in diet. However famines remain common in some regions of the world due
to climate and demographic issues.
Diet-related disorders - A diet high in total fat, cholesterol, sugar, and other
refined carbohydrates, and low in polyunsaturated fatty acids and fibre, and often
accompanied by an increasingly sedentary life, is characteristic of most richer
societies (and of increasing portions of the population in poorer societies). These
characteristics result in increased prevalence of and degenerative diseases.
Behavioural change - A new pattern appears to be emerging in this stage as a
result of changes in diet, evidently associated with the desire to prevent or delay
degenerative diseases and prolong health. Whether these changes, instituted in
some countries by consumers and prodded in others by government policy, will
constitute a large-scale transition in dietary structure and body composition
remains to be seen.
iii) (4 x 1 mark)
Critical analysis of fast foods in relation to nutrient and energy value:
Most of the fast foods are deep fried. Fast food restaurants have developed selling
strategies which encourage clients to purchase more food for lesser money. This
has encouraged over-eating and resulted in increased rates of obesity.
Despite the fact that fast foods are higher energy laden foods as opposed to
healthier alternatives, people tend to consume the same or even more quantities.
This leads to extremely high energy meals which, when coupled with a physically
inactive lifestyle, may result in obesity.
Energy is mainly coming from saturated fat leading to obesity, diabetes,
hypertension and CHD.
Most fast food outlets use lower quality produce when preparing their food. Fast
foods also lack essential vitamins and minerals.
Most fast food is high in salt or sugar to give a better taste. However the risk for
hypertension leading to CHD and diabetes is increased.
iv) (4 x 1 mark)
Reasons for higher risks for cancer:
Dietary factors that appear to be associated with developing adenomatous polyps
and an increased incidence of CRC risk include a diet high in total fat and meat
(both red and white meat).
Higher consumption of refined food lacking fibre and water.
Cigarette smoking is associated with an increased tendency to form adenomas that
develop into CRC.
Genetic predisposition.
Excessive alcohol use.
A sedentary lifestyle has been associated in some studies with an increased risk of
(2 x 1 mark)
Recommendations to reduce risk of CRC:
Maintain healthy body weight.
Increase consumption of water and fibre.
Moderate alcohol consumption.
Reduce consumption of saturated fat.
Question 5
i) (3 X 1 mark for explanation, 6 X 0.5 marks for food items)
Explanation of terms giving detailed explanation of process involved and food items
that can be treated.
Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) is a technique used for prolonging the
shelf-life period of fresh or minimally processed foods. In this preservation
technique, the air surrounding the food in the package is changed to another
composition. This way, the initial fresh state of the product may be prolonged.
MAP is used with various types of products, where the mixture of gases in the
package depends on the type of product, packaging materials and storage
Food items which can be MAP packed:
 Fresh meat
 Processed meat
 Cheese
 Milk powder
 Fresh pasta
 Fruit & Vegetables
Ready Meals
Case ready meat
Fresh poultry
Fish & Seafood
Vacuum packing (or vacuum packaging) is a method of packaging that removes
air from the package prior to sealing. It can involve both rigid and flexible types
of packaging. The intent is usually to remove oxygen from the container to extend
the shelf life of foods and, with flexible package forms, to reduce the volume of
the contents and package.
Food items which can be vacuum packed:
Commonly used to store dry foods over a long period of time. Foods such as
cereals, nuts, cured meats, cheese, smoked fish, coffee, and potato chips (crisps).
On a more short term basis, vacuum packing can also be used to store fresh foods,
such as vegetables, meats, and liquids, because they inhibit bacterial growth.
 Wax coating - Coating of fruit or vegetables packaging sheets is carried out by
applying a thin layer of wax on the surface. The coating process can be carried out
by either dipping, brushing or spraying with wax. This coating is normally
referred to as edible coating. An edible coating is a thin layer that is applied on the
surface of a fruit or vegetables which is consumed together with the fruit. Edible
coatings are considered to be safe for human consumption. Therefore, these
coatings are expected to be consumed together with the fruits.
Foodstuffs that are waxed are:
 Fruits: Apples, Avocadoes, Bell peppers, Lemons, Grapes, Bananas,
Melons, Oranges, Limes, Passion fruit, Peaches, Pineapples.
Vegetables: Cucumber, Tomato, Sweet potato
ii) (4 X 0.5 mark, 4 X 0.5 mark)
Positive and Negative impacts of such process for Food Producer and the consumer.
Positive impacts
The food producer
The shelf-life of the product will
Retains the product’s freshness,
consumers are more ready to pay
for the product even at a higher
Negative impacts
thickness of barrier films are used
for different food items, hence
expenses increase.
Though coating is an effective
method of value addition and
preservation for the food
The consumer
Freezer burn is eliminated,
because foods no longer become
dehydrated from contact with
cold, dry air.
Vacuum packing greatly reduces
the bulk of items, hence less 
freight expenses.
The shelf-life of the product will
More variety, better texture and
Dry, solid foods, such as brown 
sugar, won't become hard,
because they don't come in
contact with air and, therefore,
can't absorb moisture from the
Good quality fresh non-seasonal
food can be imported and
Vacuum packaging delicate food
items can be done by using an
inert gas, such as nitrogen. This
helps prevent crushing fragile
items and delicate foods such as
potato chips.
Foods that are high in fats and
oils won't become rancid,
because there's no oxygen
coming in contact with the fats,
which causes the rancid taste and
Insect infestation is eliminated,
because insects require oxygen to
survive and hatch.
product, it is having some
mechanization is not available
for various coating operations.
Many of the coating materials
are high in cost and some of
the coating operations are also
higher cost. This leads to
increase the cost of operation
of coating. So, the food
producers have to reduce the
cost of operation by finding
out the cheapest coating
material and method possible
which may not be of a high
More packaging to dispose of.
Higher prices to pay.
Impact of MAP and wax
coating on health are still not
totally hazard free.
Meat and fish will marinade in
minutes when vacuum packaged
in canisters, because as air is
being removed from the canister,
the pores of the meat or fish open
up and allow the marinade to
Food bills are reduced because
food lasts longer (so less spoiled
food will need to be thrown
away), and because food can be
purchased in lower-priced bulk
quantities and re-packaged at
home into smaller portions.
iii) (5 X 1 mark)
Measures to be taken by food transport companies to ensure that maximum hygiene
and safety standards are attained:
Identify a food protection management team.
Develop a comprehensive transportation and storage security plan.
Assess and identify vulnerable points of contamination. A flow diagram from
your point-of-origin to final destination, including all shipping modes/routes, can
be a helpful tool in your assessment.
Define and implement controls to prevent product adulteration or contamination
during transportation and storage.
Have a system in place to identify and track the product during transportation or
distribution (e.g., use of tamper-resistant seals corresponding to specific
shipments and their documentation, Global Positioning System).
Verify that contracted transporters (e.g., air, ground, maritime, rail) and
storage/warehouse facilities have a security program in effect.
v) (0.5 mark)
Abbreviation HACCP:
Abbreviation HACCP stands for Hazard Analysis & Critical Control Points
(1 mark)
HACCP’s vital role in the food industry and the safe guarding of consumers’ health:
HACCP plays a vital role in food safety as it is a tool which addresses and ensures
safe food to consumers through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and
physical hazards from raw material production, procurement and handling, to
manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product.
(7 X 0.5mark)
Steps involved:
Principle 1: Conduct a hazard analysis.
Principle 2: Identify critical control points.
Principle 3: Establish critical limits for each critical control point.
Principle 4: Establish critical control point monitoring requirements.
Principle 5: Establish corrective actions.
Principle 6: Establish procedures for ensuring the HACCP system is working as
Principle 7: Establish record keeping procedures.
Question 6
i) (3 x 0.5 mark for definition and 3 x 0.5 mark for scientific principles involved)
Definition of conduction, convection and radiation:
Conduction - Conduction, one of the most basic principles of cooking, is the
movement of heat from one item to another through direct contact. For example,
when a flame touches the bottom of a pan, heat is conducted to the pan.
Convection – Convection is heat transfer by mass motion of a fluid, such as air or
water, when the heated fluid is caused to move away from the source of heat, carrying
energy with it.
Radiation – Radiation is energy transferred by waves of heat or light striking the
food. Two types of radiant heat are infrared and microwave.
Scientific principles
In conduction, the heat causes molecules in the substance nearest to the heat sources
to vibrate. These in turn cause other molecules next to them to vibrate also, producing
heat, thus heat transfer is by means of molecular agitation within a material without
any motion of the material as a whole. The heat is transferred right through the
substance with the result that the whole substance becomes hot e.g. the gas flame
heats the base of the pan and the heat is conducted all around the pan. The heat
conducted then goes through the food and cooks it.
Heat is conducted at different rates as there can be:
 Good conductors of heat, which conduct heat rapidly and efficiently e.g.
metals – when placing a metal spoon in a bowl of boiling water, the spoon
becomes hot after a few seconds.
Poor conductors of heat, which conduct heat slowly and inefficiently e.g.
glass, wood, cotton cloths – when placing a wooden spoon in a bowl of
boiling water, the spoon does not become hot.
Convection above a hot surface occurs because hot air expands, becomes less dense,
and rises. Hot water is likewise less dense than cold water and rises, causing
convection currents which transport energy. Convection can also lead to circulation in
a liquid, as in the heating of a pot of water over a flame. Heated water expands and
becomes more buoyant. Cooler, more dense water near the surface descends and
patterns of circulation can be formed, though they will not be as regular as suggested
in the drawing.
Radiation - Radiation is heat transfer by the emission of electromagnetic waves
which carry energy away from the emitting object. Heat travels from one place to
another by rays. A hot object radiates heat rays so a grill gives out heat by rays. This
can be like cooking in a microwave or by using radiant heat from an electric heating
element like in an oven (specifically for broiling) or toaster. Therefore, food that is
grilled or toasted is cooked by radiant heat. The radiation heat works on the surface
of the food and travels inwards to ensure that the food is cooked properly. Since the
radiation heat sears the surface of the food, the juices in the food are not allowed to
escape and the inside of the large food is cooked in its own juices. It is recommended
that the food that is being cooked be turned to ensure even heating.
Heat rays can be reflected by a shiny or white surface. Dull black surfaces absorb
and give off heat. During cooking e.g. grilling, the heat waves only heat the surface
of the food; the rest is heated by conduction.
(3 x 1 mark for labelled diagram)
Labelled diagrams:
ii) (3 x 1 mark)
Suitable method of cooking:
(3 x 2 marks)
Effects on texture and nutrient content:
Beef for a 3-year-old child recovering from influenza.
Any method of cooking which keeps most of the nutrients in food and the
food has to be easily chewed and digested by a 3-year-old. A variety of
textures in food may be presented to the child with colourful vegetables.
Examples would be:
Steamed slices of beef – steaming will make the beef tender and can be
chewed easily by the child. It will retain most of its nutrients as there is no
direct heat, however vitamin K is destroyed. The beef slices keep the
appearance as they do not lose shape whilst cooking.
Stewed meat balls/meatballs cooked in tomato sauce – mincing makes the
beef easier to chew. Slow moist cooking makes the beef tender. Nutrients
may be lost however water-soluble vitamins are leached in the sauce or stew
liquid which is also consumed. Vitamin C in tomato sauce will aid in the
absorption of iron in meat.
In both methods, proteins in beef are denatured due to heat giving the brown
colour of cooked meat. Since denatured proteins toughen the meat, the slow
moist cooking will help keeping it tender.
Fish for an elderly person who has problems with chewing and
Fish is already tender due to its short muscle fibres. In this case fish can be
cooked in any way, but one must keep in mind the destruction of nutrients by
the heat applied. In addition since the elderly has difficulty in chewing and
swallowing, cooking fish in a sauce such as stewing or casserole may help the
elderly person eat more comfortably. The fish will be easily broken into small
pieces and since it is soft, it will be easy to swallow. Any water-soluble
vitamins lost will be in the liquid sauce. Since fish is cooked quickly, there is
no need to cook it for a long time, so this will reduce the destruction of
The fish can also be poached reducing loss of nutrients as water is not boiling
when the fish is cooking. The texture remains soft keeping its taste and
The fish can also be baked together with potatoes and other vegetables. Since
a bit of water is used, the food will remain mostly soft. However since this
takes longer to cook more nutrients are lost. Top layer of the dish may be too
tough for the elderly to eat, as during baking, topmost food becomes crunchy
so this needs to be discarded. Alternatively dish can be covered with foil to
prevent the food from getting crunchy; however food will not get a golden
brown colour on top.
Another method would be grilling the fish to keep its appearance and bring
out the taste, serving it with a sauce to help the elderly chew and swallow the
fish without problems. Since there is direct heat, destruction of nutrients is at
a greater risk.
Vegetables for a lacto-vegetarian.
Vegetables are rich in water-soluble vitamins and green leafy vegetables,
wheat germs and whole grains are also rich in vitamin K which is easily
destroyed by heat. Suitable methods would be stir-frying, as vegetables will
only be cooked for 2 to 3 minutes, reducing loss of nutrients, or lightly
steamed to reduce length of cooking timem thus reducing loss of nutrient
content. In both cases, vegetables remain crunchy keeping their appearance,
and colour is not lost.
iii) (3 x 1 mark)
Scientific principles involved when cooking in a microwave oven:
Microwave oven works by passing non-ionizing microwave radiation through the
food. Microwave radiation is between common radio and infrared frequencies. Water,
fat, and other substances in the food absorb energy from the microwaves in a process
called dielectric heating. Many molecules have a partial positive charge at one end
and a partial negative charge at the other, and therefore rotate as they try to align
themselves with the alternating electric field of the microwaves. Rotating molecules
hit other molecules and put them into motion, thus dispersing energy. This energy,
when dispersed as molecular vibration in solids and liquids (i.e., as both potential
energy and kinetic energy of atoms), is heat.
Microwave heating is more efficient on liquid water than on frozen water, where the
movement of molecules is more restricted. It is also less efficient on fats and sugars
than on liquid water.
Microwaves are absorbed in the outer layers of food in a manner somewhat similar to
heat from other methods. Depending on water content, the depth of initial heat
deposition may be several centimetres or more with microwave ovens, in contrast to
infrared or convection heating, which deposit heat thinly at the food surface.
Penetration depth of microwaves is dependent on food composition and the
frequency. Microwaves cook from the inside out only in the sense that each molecule
is generating heat from "inside" and radiating it "outward".
(2 x 1 mark)
Precautions that a homemaker should follow to ensure safety when using a
microwave oven:
Never to use metal containers to cook food in the microwave. It will damage
the interior of the oven.
Never boil liquid uncovered. When the liquid is removed from the oven it will
erupt causing bad body scalding.
Periodically test for any leakages around the microwave door as this can cause
ill health to the family members when the oven is in use.
Do not have thick layers of food cooked in the microwave, as this may result
in food not being cooked in the centre and may cause food poisoning.
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF