Feb 19, 2009
Okay, I have a rant. I normally don’t write rants, but I simply couldn’t let this one go!
Hubby and I, for the past few years, have really been focused on how and what we eat. The last few years have also been challenging for me, health wise, and it all boils down to hormones in my diet- and not by my own doing. Not to mention any pesticides I’ve inadvertently ingested over the years. A recent brush with borderline pre-cancer has caused us to dig a little deeper. It’s not just about pesticides anymore. What our cattle is eating is scary! This is something we’ve known for quite a while, but what to do about it is the question. If you want a very informative book about the industrialization of our cattle ranches read Read Food What to Eat and Why, by Nina Planck. I urge you all to read it, but don’t say I didn’t warn you...it will give you more than you probably want to know.
Recently, we have been on a search for some quality meat. My mother, who lives not far from Salem has been searching the area. She has found some ranches, but they are grass-finished. I told her that we don’t want that- that is just their way of tacking on the label ‘grass-fed’ (only grass-finished) so they can profit. These farms feed their cattle grass the last month or two of their lives. They still spend their lives in feedlots. We don’t want grain fed. You wouldn’t believe what grain does to the cows- and then problems get passed to us...again, read the book.
Here is an interesting article in the Oregonian, written by Leslie Cole about the truth of the labels. I encourage you to read it, and also the book, because Leslie does not go into the details of what feeding grain to cattle actually does to the cattle. The article starts out talking about a taste test conducted by the OSU and was a done using elementary school aged children. Grass-fed hamburgers vs grain-fed hamburgers. The children liked both about the same! I don’t know about you, but I’ve tasted good meat...there is a big difference in how it smells coming out of the package, when cooked, and how it tastes. Was the test fair- No! They didn’t use grass-fed, but grain-fed grass-finished. Why use grain? To fatten them up...it’s all about money and the cost to us is high.
I could go into detail, but lets just ask this- Is anybody surprised about mad-cow disease given the fact that we feed our cattle...meat, bones, blood, feathers, and anything else that is not edible for us (I believe that is not in practice any more, by the way, but you get the point). Shouldn’t there be a bit of backfire when forcing an animal to eat meat, turning them into carnivores. Why are we feeding them grain when they don’t normally eat it? Is there something wrong with doing it the way they did it before heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and numerous other diseases? Oh, yeah, I forgot...it’s all about profit, silly me. Yes, it takes more land. Yes, it will be more expensive to the consumer (not if everyone were doing it correctly, however). Will I pay the higher cost? I will one way or another! It’s a pay me now, or pay me later kind-of thing. I have a choice, pay the extra cost for better meat now, or pay more medical bills later.
Am I going to be accused, yet again, of being a tree hugging, owl loving, fire-fighter sacrificing for the sake of fish, hairy armpit person? Probably. One difference, however, human life over that of animal- but responsible care of the animals of this earth...especially ones we eat! I need to do some more research on this, but one thing is for sure, I can't continue to eat awful meat. It is terrible going shopping now! Ignorance was bliss- I suppose.
Okay, enough. What do you think?
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