A Melbourne man, Reece Caldecourt, made the press this week claiming he could eat 100 dumplings in 90 minutes. The story was picked up by Hamish and Andy and things spread from there as they investigated if 100 dumplings in 90 minutes was possible or if Reece was “full of lies and not dumplings”. Unfortunately, Reece pulled out of his attempt so we are left wondering – for the moment.
It did however raise some interesting numeracy questions and problem solving opportunities. The restaurant, City Orchids Garden in Melbourne, offers 90 minute sessions of all you can eat dumplings for $19.90 each Monday. How does the restaurant arrive at these numbers and will they make a profit?
This is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate to students a practical application of problem solving where multiple solutions are possible and where reasoning and communication will be crucial to convince others of both the appropriate time limit and costs.
What questions does this problem generate?
‘How many dumplings can an average person eat in 90 minutes?’ is an obvious one.
But what about these…
Can you consume the dumplings at a constant rate over a 90minute period?
Is there a period of time after which you “recover” and can start eating again?
Can the same timings and costs be applied to other foods? Does salt or sugar content have an impact?
Is the restaurant happy to make a loss on Monday nights because of the marketing generated by the promotion?
Should we encouraging this eat beyond what you need mentality?