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tkhawk
Jan. 16, 2010, 02:30 AM
It appears to be in its infancy, but there seems to be technology to "grow" meat in labs from stem cells. Probably will take a decade or more, but just thought it to be very interesting. If it ever were to become commercial and we have factories growing meat, I wonder how farming might look in the future?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/15/stem-cell-pork-scientists_n_424759.html

Bluey
Jan. 16, 2010, 06:31 AM
We have debated this same topic on Off Topic days.

This will be a great step forward to providing enough protein with the proper profile for human's best nutrition, something sorely needed, as so many in this world are still starving.:no:

There is a prize offered by PETA of, I think 3 million $, to whoever makes meat in a lab, that can be produced commercially.

Their idea is not to help hungry humans, but so we won't need domestic animals any more, other than for our pleasure.
As we know, animal rights are advancing the idea that humans should not have animals to use at all, not for any needs and especially not for our own pleasure of owning or interacting with them.

What does that mean? Eventually, no more horses, because, in the eyes of animal rights fanatics, breeding and using horses for ANY purpose, even that of a confined pasture ornament, is unethical, infringing on the rights of animals, as the AR followers see it.
They don't consider our symbiotic use of animals, that humans evolved with, a proper ethical choice.

According to them, we need a better human, that won't use animals, or better yet, extinguish the human race, that are evil and leave the world an idillic blue marble, to remain static, without changes humans bring living on it, until the end when the sun finally quits on us.

This "meat in a vat" is one more step towards the ultimate goal of matter transformation and so energy manipulation, at such a basic level that we can make whatever we want out of any given mass.
The future is not so far any more.:eek:

One of the foreseable consequences, that will affect all of us that own, use and work with horses will be, as the current president of the HSUS said many years ago, in his quest for animal rights: "One generation and no more domestic animals and none too soon for me".

Brave new world we live in.;)

wendy
Jan. 16, 2010, 07:33 AM
I suspect "meat in a vat" will be so expensive to grow in comparison to letting some animals go out and forage and breed on their own that only the rich vegans will be eating it.

dmalbone
Jan. 16, 2010, 08:15 AM
Yeah... PETA is sure a special group of people. :rolleyes: Just make sure you don't group all animal rights activists into the same group as them! I, for one, would never want to give up Fido and Whiskers even though I don't eat meat. PETA is in a league of their own. You won't catch this person eating meat from a vat anyway. I know little about it, but I would think that it would not be vegan if grown from stem cells, no? I don't eat meat, but am fully aware that cows,pigs, etc. are a necessary part of our economy.

MistyBlue
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:18 AM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

mlranchtx
Jan. 16, 2010, 10:42 AM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

:eek::eek::eek: I agree. I'm NOT eating that.:dead:

kookicat
Jan. 16, 2010, 01:52 PM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

That was also my first thought. :o

hb
Jan. 16, 2010, 02:28 PM
But if it's made from stem cells then how is it not an animal product? Didn't the stem cells come from an animal?

tkhawk
Jan. 16, 2010, 03:50 PM
It does come from an animal, but it is not "born", raised and then slaughtered. The idea here seems to be to just let the stem cells grow as muscle alone or whatever you wan't for meat without "life" I guess? I don't know-very futuristic for me. But just found it quite interesting that you can do that and if it ever took off in a commercial way, the implications for farmers. Gasp, I can just imagine meat coming in with Made in China labels!:eek:

Sing Mia Song
Jan. 16, 2010, 03:54 PM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

Hey, if it tastes like a rare-grilled tenderloin from a corn-finished steer, honey, sign me up!

But I agree that it will probably be prohibitively expensive. Look at the cost of cell-culture research versus live animal. Meat in a vat at a competitive price is a long, long way off.

It wouldn't be such a bad thing to develop a healthier alternative to beef for our red-meat-loving American populace. God knows the cost of obesity-related disease (hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes) is soaring out of control. And animal-based agriculture uses up a ridiculous amount of resources. But I sure wouldn't want to see animals become extinct for our convenience. I'm not convinced that one leads to the other in such a straight line as some may think, but it bears considering.

MunchkinsMom
Jan. 16, 2010, 03:56 PM
I can't imagine being the first human to even do the taste test! UGH! Anyone that raised meat animals know that what they eat effects the taste of the meat.

And as to this guy:


as the current president of the HSUS said many years ago, in his quest for animal rights: "One generation and no more domestic animals and none too soon for me".


Of course in another generation he will be retired, but until then, he should be grateful to have a salary that is supported by domestic animals existence.

ThatScaryChick
Jan. 16, 2010, 04:47 PM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

Same here.

RedMare01
Jan. 16, 2010, 05:02 PM
Anyone read Oryx and Crake? Margaret Atwood?

Caitlin

BravAddict
Jan. 16, 2010, 05:13 PM
Anyone read Oryx and Crake? Margaret Atwood?

Caitlin

Yeah, I also read Frankenstein, and yet here I am, using a computer powered by electricity...

Wooo spooooky technology!! Now, surely, THIS is the ONE event that signals the end of days...

Bluey
Jan. 16, 2010, 07:04 PM
Right now, they are growing ears and implanting them, for those that lost an ear, right from their own stem cells, so no rejection.:cool:

Just think that similar technology may some day grow a hand for those that lose one.

I think it will be very long before we may grow a brain that would work like our homegrown one.;)

danceronice
Jan. 16, 2010, 07:23 PM
Hey, if it tastes like a rare-grilled tenderloin from a corn-finished steer, honey, sign me up!



Hey, if it TASTED like a real steak, I'd eat it. Even if it had exactly the same nutritional profile.

But to my mind, the only really important application something likely to be so expensive would have is for space exploration uses. You want a base on the moon or Mars, we are not equipped to take live animals and you can't live entirely off hydroponics. Vat-grown protein is actually a common SF trope (frequently with speculation about the taste, very little of it positive.)

tle
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:01 PM
But if it's made from stem cells then how is it not an animal product? Didn't the stem cells come from an animal?

For the same reason that CAFO raised beef isn't GOOD quality meat that I want to eat. It may be an animal, but it certainly isn't natural or quality. I don't trust it nor would I trust the chain that supplied it. One of the biggest problems with our current food supply is centralization. It would take NOTHING for a bio-terrorist to do massive amounts of harm simply BECAUSE our food supply is so centralized. Add "meat in a petri dish" technology and it gets worse I'm sure.

Nope... sorry. I won't be touching that wiht a 10 foot pole in my lifetime.

tle
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:05 PM
Hey, if it tastes like a rare-grilled tenderloin from a corn-finished steer, honey, sign me up!

<snip>
It wouldn't be such a bad thing to develop a healthier alternative to beef for our red-meat-loving American populace. God knows the cost of obesity-related disease (hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes) is soaring out of control.

Hate to argue with you but these 2 statements are the problem. 1) Corn finished? Why would a steer need to be corn fed at all?? And why finish it when it's been raised on beautiful, healthy, NATURAL pasture??

AND... the meat itself is NOT the problem. The problem is the QUALITY of meat. If more people at naturally, the diseases would go down in quality. Uh... that means more pasture-raised and LESS CORN (and CAFO feed lots)!!

Blinkers On
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:06 PM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

Ditto this!! I am aghast that this is being done.. meat in a vat=spam

Daydream Believer
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:13 PM
Hate to argue with you but these 2 statements are the problem. 1) Corn finished? Why would a steer need to be corn fed at all?? And why finish it when it's been raised on beautiful, healthy, NATURAL pasture??

AND... the meat itself is NOT the problem. The problem is the QUALITY of meat. If more people at naturally, the diseases would go down in quality. Uh... that means more pasture-raised and LESS CORN (and CAFO feed lots)!!

Good post and my feelings as well. :yes:

dmalbone
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:23 PM
I think it will be very long before we may grow a brain that would work like our homegrown one.;)

Ha. I don't know... some people don't really have much to work with so it might not be much of a stretch.

Sakura
Jan. 16, 2010, 09:52 PM
It appears to be in its infancy, but there seems to be technology to "grow" meat in labs from stem cells. Probably will take a decade or more, but just thought it to be very interesting. If it ever were to become commercial and we have factories growing meat, I wonder how farming might look in the future?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/15/stem-cell-pork-scientists_n_424759.html

That just ain't right.:no:

And this:

Post describes the texture of the meat as sort of like scallop, firm but a little squishy and moist.

:uhoh::dead::uhoh:


None of the researchers have actually eaten the lab-made meat yet, but Post said the lower protein content means it probably wouldn't taste anything like pork.

Maybe like... chicken?


Some experts doubted lab-produced meat could ever match the taste of real meat.

You think?


One of the biggest obstacles will be scaling up laboratory meat production to satisfy skyrocketing global demand.

No... One of the biggest obstacles would be getting people to EAT the stuff... We can't get starving nations in North Africa to accept genetically altered crops... you think they are going to eat your Soylent Pink?


"To produce meat at an industrial scale, we will need very large bioreactors, like those used to make vaccines or pasteurized milk," said Matheny. He thought lab-produced meat might be on the market within the next few years, while Post said it could take about a decade.


"Honey, how's your hamburger"

"It's terrific tastes bioreactor fresh" :yes:


"As long as it's cheap enough and has been proven to be scientifically valid, I can't see any reason people wouldn't eat it," said Stig Omholt, a genetics expert at the University of Life Sciences in Norway. "If you look at the sausages and other things people are willing to eat these days, this should not be a big problem."

You live in your own little reality don't you Stig... I think even the people of Norway may find it a little difficult to make their Samalahove with squishy and moist scallop like tissue.

JSwan
Jan. 17, 2010, 07:54 AM
The only thing that should be grown in a vat is BEER.

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 07:55 AM
Hate to argue with you but these 2 statements are the problem. 1) Corn finished? Why would a steer need to be corn fed at all?? And why finish it when it's been raised on beautiful, healthy, NATURAL pasture??

AND... the meat itself is NOT the problem. The problem is the QUALITY of meat. If more people at naturally, the diseases would go down in quality. Uh... that means more pasture-raised and LESS CORN (and CAFO feed lots)!!

Grain finished beef is the gold standard for consumer acceptance.
There have been many studies conducted and 100% of them show all people prefer the grain fed finished beef over all others.
Seems to be how our taste buds evolved, to prefer certain characteristics in our meats over all others.

The same with chicken, turkey or pork.

Not only that, we are lucky that thu finishing with grain before slaughter, we are adding so much more efficiency to the process today, to the point that today we are dellivering the same tonnage of product to consumers with less than 1/2 of the cowherd.:)
If you care to be "green", just think that we are cutting down the carbon footprint of producing beef considerably by becoming more efficient, something those against animal agriculture forget so easily.;)

The reality is that, other than veal, that is processed before weaning, while still on milk, the beef all of us raise out in those idillic green pastures would not really cook and eat at all like grain fed will.
When you add to that needing so much more land to produce on grass that extra tonnage finishing on grain produces, well, there is not enough land out there for that, we would be importing even more beef from those countries that still have that land, like South America and Down Under.

One misconception people have when buying "grass finished" beef that "is soo good" is that many producers are still feeding grains, but on grass pastures, so they can say their cattle are "finished on grass" and still have the consumers accept it.

Now, truly grass finished beef has it's place and many people get used to it fine.
The trouble is that the process is so much less efficient as to make grass finished beef too expensive and not enough to provide all that want some with enough, without importing it, which hurts our balance of trade.

This may be moot question anyway, if we get production going on that meat in a vat.
I would suggest they run electricity thru it to firm up those flaccid muscles, so the texture improves.:yes:

Sakura
Jan. 17, 2010, 08:57 AM
I would suggest they run electricity thru it to firm up those flaccid muscles, so the texture improves.:yes:

Franken-meat :winkgrin:

Sakura
Jan. 17, 2010, 08:57 AM
The only thing that should be grown in a vat is BEER.

I'll drink to that :yes:

JSwan
Jan. 17, 2010, 09:12 AM
Bluey - no offense but I get tired of the same old mantra on this subject.

What one prefers has less to do with "evolving", and more to do with what one is used to eating. If you eat a lot of salt,sugar, or fat - you become accustomed to those substances. That becomes the new "normal" for you.

Cut back or omit those substances, and the food may taste bland. Or not mouth watering.

Just because one's taste buds have become used to Big Mac's 5 times a week - does not mean the Big Mac is good for you, or excellent cuisine.

A child would consider Rocky Road Ice Cream the gold standard - but a parent knows that the kid needs to eat his vegetables - even though the vegetables don't taste as good to the kid.

So enough with that argument. You can cite study after study after study - but it doesn't mean that copious amounts of fat filled meat is tasty or good for you. It's not.

I prefer grass fed and finished beef. A LOT of people prefer it. I also prefer the taste and texture of free range poultry, and naturally raised pork. This method of raising livestock is a multi-million dollar industry in my state - and it's growing despite the bad economy.

None of it is pallid, drowning in grease, or flavorless. All of it is full of flavor, lean, and even cheaper cuts are tender and delicious. These products are in high demand by chefs in the region - and not just be expensive restaurants - but by small inexpensive restaurants as well.

So please stop telling us what we like to eat.

We can decide for ourselves, thank you.

Oh - and you're absolutely wrong about grass fed beef being finished on grain. The USDA grass fed labeling certification requires that the animal NEVER be fed grain. If you purchase beef with a grass-fed label in the US - it is grass-fed AND grass-finished. Under USDA regs - the grass fed certification has a list of requirements for shelter, forage, water, and veterinary standards of care as well.

Get your facts straight.

ETA - for those interested in knowing more about the marketing claims standard for grass fed beef - here you go. http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/getfile?dDocName=STELPRDC5063842

This standard was created in 2007 and applies to any producer who wishes to market his beef as "grass-fed". No hormones. No steroids. No antibiotics (if an animal requires antibiotics it can receive them but then must be removed from the grass-fed program and sold on the conventional market). No confinement/feedlot, etc.



Grain finished beef is the gold standard for consumer acceptance.
There have been many studies conducted and 100% of them show all people prefer the grain fed finished beef over all others.
Seems to be how our taste buds evolved, to prefer certain characteristics in our meats over all others.

wendy
Jan. 17, 2010, 10:33 AM
And animal-based agriculture uses up a ridiculous amount of resources.
this is not true if animals are used CORRECTLY. Animals used to be used to turn things people can't eat, like grass, into things they can eat, like meat, or turn things they really don't want to eat, like bugs or garbage, into things they can eat, like eggs and ham.
The bizzarre modern take on animal farming where you feed the animals things people can eat, like grain, is the problem, not the idea of farming animals.
Meat in vat would dramatically worsen the problem of inappropriately consuming resources to make meat. Meat in vat would require highly processed foods to grow, of which the food sources and the processing would divert resources that could be better used in other ways to produce the meat.
There's just no way you can improve on the economical, natural way of turning grass and bugs into edible protein. Unless perhaps they can invent a bio form that could turn sunlight and bugs into a meat-like substance- fly-catching steak bushes, perhaps. They'd probably have to catch bugs because otherwise you'd have to dump huge amounts of nitrogen-laden fertilizer on them to get meat off them.

cbv
Jan. 17, 2010, 10:56 AM
Just for the scene in the book where the world is coming to an end because of release of a bio-engineered, deadly pathogen imbedded and distributed in a 'viagra' type pill...and during the ensuing world-wide panic and chaos PETA types are breaking into a factory to 'set free' the bio-engineered eight breasted, headless/leggless chickens grown on an assembly line (created due to marketing that showed consumers preferred chicken breasts to all other cuts of chicken meat and by growing headless/legless chickens there was so much efficiency added to the process)...

I haven't read the book in years and may have some of the details wrong -- but I remember laughing out loud reading that scene :)

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 12:25 PM
JSwan, I hear you.
What I don't hear is that you are a producer of grass fed beef, so you of course would like for people to eat that in preference to grain fed, even if by all measures it is not as good and most people don't prefer it.

Sorry, that is the truth and when you are selling to consumers, you have to produce what they like.
You have found those few that like your grass fed beef, but if you had to sell your grass fed cattl in the stores, against that of cattle finished on grain, at that higher cost and harder to cook, well, that is a small market, not all could sell into that, not enough people would eat beef if grass fed is what they had to eat.

I am glad that finally the USDA closed that loophole, if you are right and is requiring grass finished beef to mean truly no grain fed, but as you know, that is very recent.
The sadly passed County himself sold grass fed beef he fed grain on his pastures to finish and said so here.

Humans have evolved to like certain foods and yes, you can change those tastes by upbringing, but plenty of research will tell you that most people like grain fed beef over any other, when they don't know what they are eating and it is not because "it is swimming in fat", which was taken in consideration on some of the tests and lean beef was used for them.
Practically every university animal science program has many, many studies on all kinds of food and this has been one of the constants in them.
I can't help it, those are facts and getting mad at me won't change them.:no:

You want to know what is new?
Here:

---"Vermont Slaughter Bill Involves HSUS Oversight
1/10/2010 4:24:27 PM

A bill introduced january 5th by Vermont Senator Giard proposes to require that a representative of the Vermont humane society be present when livestock are bled or slaughtered, and to report and increase penalties for violations of the humane slaughter rules.

To read the full text, visit http://www.leg.state.vt.us/docs/2010/bills/Intro/S-230.pdf"---

For those that wonder what the non-profit animal rights organization called HSUS is doing now wanting to oversee slaughter, well, I wonder how much longer they will retain their non-profit status, when they want to become by law meat inspectors?
I don't know what knothead in their organization is coming with such ideas, just as they came up with the lawsuit to close TX horse slaughter plants with the old 1947 law intended to stop the selling of horse meat passed as beef.:rolleyes:

Don't kid yourself, all of us with animals are their target, animal agriculture their current one, horses right behind, they are just picking out one of us at the time, but no one will be spared.:(

Daydream Believer
Jan. 17, 2010, 01:05 PM
JSwan, I hear you.
What I don't hear is that you are a producer of grass fed beef, so you of course would like for people to eat that in preference to grain fed, even if by all measures it is not as good and most people don't prefer it.

What you aren't saying though is that JSwan sells a very small amount of grass fed beef....a couple of steers a year...and she's selling out fast...so she's not lacking in customers. ;) A local farrier I know sold out fast on grass finished beef also this year and I'm purchasing a few steers to raise out there on pasture with my horses so I will have healthy beef for my table as well as some to sell to pay for it.

Selling grass fed beef is not JSwan's livelihood...nor mine..nor this farriers...but a nice supplement. The huge food industry and several big corporations stand to lose a lot if people decide they would rather eat more healthy, different tasting, absolutely delicious, humanely raised, grass fed beef, poultry and pork....so it's understandable that they'd do everything in their power to attack the "competition"...small as it is...it is growing and growing fast and picking up new people daily as more and more people learn about it. Cripes..we already have people wanting beef and poultry we raise here and we haven't even started yet! I wish the demand for horses was that good!

The best thing is that the little guy...the one who raises the cattle and then sells them to the feedlots stands to lose the least. Finishing a steer on grass before it's slaughtered is easy and cheap and then the money goes directly into the pocket of the farmer/rancher who produced the cattle and not some big corporation...the way it should be IMO.

With the food industry today, it's not about what is "good" for people but rather about making money. The health of America's people is going down fast...more kids have diabetes than ever before, heart disease is the number one killer, obesity is out of control, and those major health problems are directly tied to HOW and WHAT we Americans eat. All of this has been building over the last few decades since industrial giants have taken over US food production...that is not a coincidence.

Not only is the health of people who eat meat (from the CFAO's at stake) but the health of our planet and environment is at stake. Lots is at stake other than people's taste preferences.

I recently had a roast from a feed lot versus one of my lovely grass fed ones out of my freezer. The fat was so thick I could hardly stand to eat it...it was disgusting after the leaner meat I've grown accustomed to. Until the last year or so when I purchased my first grass finished beef, I would not have known or noticed the difference. It truly would not take people long to adjust if the need arose (and it has) to eating leaner meats.

On the OT...I think meat grown in a vat is even more disgusting a concept than meat grown in a CAFO and both are revolting.

JSwan
Jan. 17, 2010, 01:13 PM
WTF does that mean? It's like ANY other business - you produce a product that people WANT. People do want grass-fed beef - otherwise there would be no market for it.

You have absolutely no idea what you're talking about Bluey. Sorry. You don't.

At some point industries become so large that they become the sole purveyors of "truth". Agriculture is such an industry.

Well - things aren't quite as rosy as y'all would like us to believe. I can't even grow corn on my own land because of the GMO crap being grown around me. That's just peachy - I can't even get away from you people on my OWN LAND.

The food is gross. It might as well be grown in a vat. I don't want to eat it. You can't force me. You can't force others. You can keep repeating the same mantra but it won't make us change our mind.

Deal with it.

And animal rights has NOTHING to do with it. I'm working with our local processor with a goal of having a USDA inspected poultry inspector in his plant. We're hoping some of the dairy farmers will add poultry to their operations - hoping to keep them afloat since so many are going under right now.

There's more to eating naturally raised and local food than keeping Cargill's stock price high. What it means is that small and medium sized producers CONTINUE to farm. It means they DON'T have to sell out to developers - it means the kids don't leave the farm. It means we have smarter and more diversified farming - farms that don't collapse due to economic slowdown, fluctuations in commodities prices - all those dramatic finanancial swings that bring down farmer and homeowner alike.

So please - continue to raise your grain finished beef if you want. Raising a grass fed and finished steer is a different type of farming. It requires a different skill set - and a different type of management. We're not collecting scrawny cows that have lived on brush and putting them on someone's plate. You're comparing apples to oranges. The species may be the same - but the methods and management are different - and so is the finished product. It's supposed to be.




JSwan, I hear you.
What I don't hear is that you are a producer of grass fed beef, so you of course would like for people to eat that in preference to grain fed, even if by all measures it is not as good and most people don't prefer it.

Sorry, that is the truth and when you are selling to consumers, you have to produce what they like.

Sakura
Jan. 17, 2010, 01:25 PM
Some of the best beef I have ever stocked my freezer with was 100% grass fed. It was tastier than the supermarket beef, had a lower fat content and cooked just fine.

I'd go as far as to bet grass fed beef would fly off the shelves faster than conventionally grown/produced beef...

People are becoming increasingly aware of the food we put in our bodies and where it comes from. Wish I could find a steady supply of it for my family!

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 01:37 PM
What you aren't saying though is that JSwan sells a very small amount of grass fed beef....a couple of steers a year...and she's selling out fast...so she's not lacking in customers. ;) A local farrier I know sold out fast on grass finished beef also this year and I'm purchasing a few steers to raise out there on pasture with my horses so I will have healthy beef for my table as well as some to sell to pay for it.

Selling grass fed beef is not JSwan's livelihood...nor mine..nor this farriers...but a nice supplement. The huge food industry and several big corporations stand to lose a lot if people decide they would rather eat more healthy, different tasting, absolutely delicious, humanely raised, grass fed beef, poultry and pork....so it's understandable that they'd do everything in their power to attack the "competition"...small as it is...it is growing and growing fast and picking up new people daily as more and more people learn about it. Cripes..we already have people wanting beef and poultry we raise here and we haven't even started yet! I wish the demand for horses was that good!

Do you realize that, even if everyone that has room to grow some cattle on pasture and is not now did that, we still could not produce enough meat to go around, we would have to import so much of it and from countries that may be even less careful of how they produce it?

Do you really think it is healtier, better tasting and more humanely raised and why?
Those are buzzwords of the ones raising cattle for those niche markets, but studies have shown that not to be so, it is all a matter of perception, the latest one from England:

---"Organic may not be any healthier

According to a British review of studies done over the past 50 years, organic and conventionally produced foods have about the same nutrient content, suggesting that neither is better in terms of health benefits.

"We did not find any important differences in nutrient content between organically and conventionally produced foods," says study author Alan Dangour, a registered public health nutritionist with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine."---


The best thing is that the little guy...the one who raises the cattle and then sells them to the feedlots stands to lose the least. Finishing a steer on grass before it's slaughtered is easy and cheap and then the money goes directly into the pocket of the farmer/rancher who produced the cattle and not some big corporation...the way it should be IMO.

That statement doesn't make sense, because everyone that raises cattle and grazes them either sells them to the feedlot to finish on grains for a few weeks or to be slaughtered as "grass finished" beef.
The cattle are sold either way and the money goes to the pocket of that producer the same, no matter where who it sells it.:confused:

With the food industry today, it's not about what is "good" for people but rather about making money. The health of America's people is going down fast...more kids have diabetes than ever before, heart disease is the number one killer, obesity is out of control, and those major health problems are directly tied to HOW and WHAT we Americans eat. All of this has been building over the last few decades since industrial giants have taken over US food production...that is not a coincidence.

Another statement that doesn't make sense.
People's healt, for good and bad depends on so many factors that it is a little bit disingenuous to say grain fed beef is why people are not healty or too fat.:winkgrin:

Not only is the health of people who eat meat (from the CFAO's at stake) but the health of our planet and environment is at stake. Lots is at stake other than people's taste preferences.

And you know that is so?:eek:
How do you explain the millions that are healty and eat grain fed beef?:p
I think that you have read too many of those myths running around about cattle being bad for people and the enviroment, which are just that, myths propagated by some with agenda's of their own.

http://www.drovers.com/news_editorial.asp?ts=nl2&pgID=675&ed_id=6247

http://www.cattlenetwork.com/Jolley--Elitist-Foodies-Need-To-Step-Back/2010-01-04/alpharma_Article.aspx?oid=971874&fid=CN-LATEST_NEWS_&hq_e=el&hq_m=585089&hq_l=2&hq_v=bac3336c15

http://www.consumerfreedom.com/news_detail.cfm/h/3981-nudging-america-to-give-up-meat



I recently had a roast from a feed lot versus one of my lovely grass fed ones out of my freezer. The fat was so thick I could hardly stand to eat it...it was disgusting after the leaner meat I've grown accustomed to. Until the last year or so when I purchased my first grass finished beef, I would not have known or noticed the difference. It truly would not take people long to adjust if the need arose (and it has) to eating leaner meats.

You bought the wrong kind of meat, if you got a fatty one and I am surprised, because standard trim for store meat is 1/8" fat.
As for taste, well, each one has their own, although most people really don't like the meat off cattle slaughtered off grass just as much as you didn't like your fatty roast.

On the OT...I think meat grown in a vat is even more disgusting a concept than meat grown in a CAFO and both are revolting.

I agree, the idea will not sit well with those that can buy what they want to eat.
Those people that are very hungry will be those that won't care where their meat comes from and that meat is supposed to be cheaper to produce than raising it one calf at the time.
Once consumers realize it is just like any other meat, most everyone else will get over not liking it also.

Just look at what people will eat today, even something as horrible as tofu, some will eat it and grimace, just because someone told them it is good for you.:yes:

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 01:55 PM
WTF does that mean? It's like ANY other business - you produce a product that people WANT. People do want grass-fed beef - otherwise there would be no market for it.

You have absolutely no idea what you're talking about Bluey. Sorry. You don't.

At some point industries become so large that they become the sole purveyors of "truth". Agriculture is such an industry.

Well - things aren't quite as rosy as y'all would like us to believe. I can't even grow corn on my own land because of the GMO crap being grown around me. That's just peachy - I can't even get away from you people on my OWN LAND.

The food is gross. It might as well be grown in a vat. I don't want to eat it. You can't force me. You can't force others. You can keep repeating the same mantra but it won't make us change our mind.

Deal with it.

And animal rights has NOTHING to do with it. I'm working with our local processor with a goal of having a USDA inspected poultry inspector in his plant. We're hoping some of the dairy farmers will add poultry to their operations - hoping to keep them afloat since so many are going under right now.

There's more to eating naturally raised and local food than keeping Cargill's stock price high. What it means is that small and medium sized producers CONTINUE to farm. It means they DON'T have to sell out to developers - it means the kids don't leave the farm. It means we have smarter and more diversified farming - farms that don't collapse due to economic slowdown, fluctuations in commodities prices - all those dramatic finanancial swings that bring down farmer and homeowner alike.

So please - continue to raise your grain finished beef if you want. Raising a grass fed and finished steer is a different type of farming. It requires a different skill set - and a different type of management. We're not collecting scrawny cows that have lived on brush and putting them on someone's plate. You're comparing apples to oranges. The species may be the same - but the methods and management are different - and so is the finished product. It's supposed to be.

I think that it is you who don't understand.
I raise cattle exactly like you do, there is NO difference on how my cattle and everyone else's cattle are raised.
I can, if I so wish, sell "grass finished" beef, just as you do, but I prefer to sell them thru different marketing channels, mostly because I have too many to sell one at the time.

Do you understand that the difference people that raise "grass fed" beef people like Salatin and you and others try to use as a marketing tool is FALSE?

For those that don't know, ALL cattle in the USA are grazed as calves and as cows and bulls, in pastures, all exactly the same, no matter what sign you want to hang on your gate.

The only difference is that at around 7-800 lbs, some are kept for replacement heifers, some bulls and a very small number are slaughtered for the niche markets of "grass finished".

The rest are fed grains for a few weeks and sold as commodity beef.
There are all kinds of grades of that too, from extremely lean to inbetween and the best grades go to the restaurant trade, that is why generally, good restaurants have such good beefsteaks.

As we can see, those that are slaughtered as "grass finished" will produce considerably less meat from that animal than if it was fed grain for an additional 400 lbs more.

That is why grain finished beef is a bonus to the consumer, giving predictable meat and in aboundance and cheaper, compared with grass fed beef, from that same animal, then if it was slaughtered at 800 lbs off grass.

So, no, JSwan, your cattle and mine are not any different in any other way than the label you choose to hang on yours.:confused:

JSwan
Jan. 17, 2010, 02:11 PM
Please don't lump me together with Joel Salatin. I'm not one of his groupies.

And YOU still don't understand. This isn't about a stupid sign on my gate. Stop patronizing everyone.

Producers who have a certified grass fed operation under the USDA regs must comply with certain criteria - it IS different.

Yes, we can both choose to send our animals through conventional markets. That's what I do if an animal doesn't sell or I can't market it as grass fed (ie; it receives antibiotics for an infection) The difference is - you can CHOOSE to do it because it makes more sense.

I MUST do it if the animal receives anything other than grass - and that includes veterinary care.

And don't dare accuse me of making a false marketing claim unless you can prove it. I went through the damn USDA certification process for my LABEL - the USDA LABEL on the product.

Yes - all beef is raised on grass. I know that already. I could do the same as you do - it is easier to just ship 'em off to be finished however - or to simply make NO claim. That gives the producer the greatest leeway and the higher profit in the long run. The is merely one business model that again - gives you the widest possible latitude.

Since I DO make a claim - I went through the USDA certification process in which my operation was audited by the USDA. That grass fed LABEL and CERTIFICATION means I comply with all applicable regs, Bluey - only one of which is that the animal eats grass. I CAN'T market my animals as anything else. The entire program is restrictive - that is so the consumer can rely upon the claim made - on the USDA approved label.

It's not me that needs to educate herself, Bluey. And I'm not making ANY false claims about how the animals are raised and I'm not making any false claims about conventional beef.

If you want to hawk how wonderful CAFO's are do it without disparaging those who wish to live differently.












Do you understand that the difference people that raise "grass fed" beef people like Salatin and you and others try to use as a marketing tool is FALSE?

Daydream Believer
Jan. 17, 2010, 02:12 PM
Bluey...My God...you are truly beyond logic or intelligent discussion. You twist things that people say, change the context, and try to make it suit the point you are trying to make. I think I'll put you back on ignore.

One thing I want to make clear though for anyone who reads Bluey's post replying to mine (if anyone bothers to). I was not talking only about consumption of beef from feed lots as affecting people's health negatively. I'm talking about our industrialized food in whole...from High fructose corn syrup to animals fed antibiotics, hormones, and corn, to anything that comes out of a "vat"...like the myriad of disgusting things from industrial farming like all the corn products/extracts, soy protein isolate and lecithin, etc... Processed food today is full of garbage...high carb, high sugar, high fat garbage. The old adage that "you are what you eat" is extremely appropriate for the myriad of health problems today in our nation.

dmalbone
Jan. 17, 2010, 02:37 PM
So, no, JSwan, your cattle and mine are not any different in any other way than the label you choose to hang on yours.:confused:

So, I'm just reading this thread to learn since I don't eat them, but do you have the USDA grass fed certification thing she was talking about or is this the "label you choose to hang on yours." you're referring to? Doesn't this also have the antibiotic, etc. stipulations? Do you not give yours those as well? From what both of you have said about your own, they don't sound the same.

dmalbone
Jan. 17, 2010, 02:40 PM
Just look at what people will eat today, even something as horrible as tofu, some will eat it and grimace, just because someone told them it is good for you.:yes:

Seriously? "even something as horrible as tofu"? Your posts are just so intolerant sometimes. Or is this just another instance of you telling everyone what kinds of foods people should and should not like?

Daydream Believer
Jan. 17, 2010, 03:15 PM
So, I'm just reading this thread to learn since I don't eat them, but do you have the USDA grass fed certification thing she was talking about or is this the "label you choose to hang on yours." you're referring to? Doesn't this also have the antibiotic, etc. stipulations? Do you not give yours those as well? From what both of you have said about your own, they don't sound the same.

They are not the same. Bluey's cattle, it would seem from what she says, are sold to a feedlot and spend the last month or two of their lives eating corn and other grains, antibiotics (to try and keep them healthy in such an unhealthy environment,) and being administered growth hormones to make them bulk up.

The nutritional profile of feed lot beef is completely different from those finished on grass, and they are much more likely to carry the more virulent and deadly strains of E Coli than a grass finished steer.

Some interesting reading.

http://www.eatwild.com/foodsafety.html

http://www.eatwild.com/healthbenefits.htm

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 06:33 PM
There is a vaccine now for that kind of e-coli, so that won't be a concern much longer.

I think that we are talking across each other here.:(

Yes, the cattle I sell I could have certified and sold to the local feedlot, that also is certified to sell as natural, organic and such labels, but still grain fed.
We just happen not to sell to them, although we can, but to another, for several reasons.

That is immaterial, because you can sell your certified cattle directly to that consumer niche that prefers it, no one is keeping you from it.
We don't here, one reason because that infrastructure to sell such cattle is not here.
I can't sell them to one customer at the time because we don't have that kind of market here, people know what is good eating and are not going to eat any other.
"Grass fed" beef to people in ranching country is what they had to eat when they didn't have any other to eat.
They are definitely not going to pay any more for that kind of beef, when they were glad when they finally could afford grain fed beef these past 40 years, once the feedlot industry took off and could provide it so cheaply.;)

Those of you near a big city with lots of people that like to say they eat green and buy your grass fed beef can market them thru those channels, but we can't here, no one wants it.

As JSwan mentioned, if she has to sell one that is not certifiable, she also uses the regular markets, just as we do.
I don't see why it is wrong for us to do so.:confused:

As for some not liking what I have to say, please, try for once to debate without making it personal.
Do come up with sensible reasons for what you are saying, not that "you don't like what I have to say", just because you don't understand it.;)

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 06:39 PM
Seriously? "even something as horrible as tofu"? Your posts are just so intolerant sometimes. Or is this just another instance of you telling everyone what kinds of foods people should and should not like?

I was repeating what some friends that are vegetarians were telling me and they said tofu was horrible, unless you made it taste like something else.
That is why I was using it for an example.
I don't know, I am allergic to soybeans.:yes:

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 06:47 PM
Bluey...My God...you are truly beyond logic or intelligent discussion. You twist things that people say, change the context, and try to make it suit the point you are trying to make. I think I'll put you back on ignore.

One thing I want to make clear though for anyone who reads Bluey's post replying to mine (if anyone bothers to). I was not talking only about consumption of beef from feed lots as affecting people's health negatively. I'm talking about our industrialized food in whole...from High fructose corn syrup to animals fed antibiotics, hormones, and corn, to anything that comes out of a "vat"...like the myriad of disgusting things from industrial farming like all the corn products/extracts, soy protein isolate and lecithin, etc... Processed food today is full of garbage...high carb, high sugar, high fat garbage. The old adage that "you are what you eat" is extremely appropriate for the myriad of health problems today in our nation.

Do you ever stop to think that, thanks to those terrible agribusiness companies, we in the USA have the most aboundant, most varied, clean and cheap food of any nation?

Do you even have any experience to compare what we have in our supermarkets and yes, even farmer's markets, with what so many other people in this world have available to them?

I would put the blame on what we choose to eat where it counts, in the mouth each one of us, when we choose to eat what we choose, from all that is out there for us in the USA.

You really have to stop and think hard, before laying any blame for some of our health problems on the supermarket, the transporting company, the processor or the farmer that produced all that bounty.

I will still say that the health problems of those that don't have food are considerably worse than trying to tweak any real and imaginary health problems some want to blame on the farmers.:rolleyes:

Daydream Believer
Jan. 17, 2010, 08:13 PM
I would put the blame on what we choose to eat where it counts, in the mouth each one of us, when we choose to eat what we choose, from all that is out there for us in the USA.



Did it ever occur to you that some blame has to be taken by those who produce such low cost, fattening, addictive, unhealthy foods in such abundance? Or perhaps those who have devised 110 ways to disguise corn in processed food? Perhaps the corporations that control even the seed that farmers can plant now..and farmers live in fear of lawsuits from giants like Monsanto..such fear that they are afraid to stand up for their own rights? Oh yeh...big Ag in the US is so advanced and our food is so "healthy" that no other developed nations will even buy our products like beef or poultry because it is so freaking full of garbage. :no:

As for making it personal...I think you did that when you attacked JSwan earlier.

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 08:34 PM
---"our food is so "healthy" that no other developed nations will even buy our products like beef or poultry because it is so freaking full of garbage.

As for making it personal...I think you did that when you attacked JSwan earlier.
__________________
"===

First, I didn't "attack" JSwan, I disagreed with her and what she posted, where she did say I didn't know what I was talking about.
I think that she didn't know what I meant either.
I don't think she "attacked" me and I sure didn't her.

Are you aware that your statements there about how bad beef is was contested in the International Tribunal in La Hague and the USA won, showing that it is not so, that those statements were false and that the European Common Market used it as a trade barrier, because when they started importing our excellent grain fed beef, their beef was not selling and their farmers had a cow about it?:yes:

Better quit repeating that, because it is not so.

In the end, that was a pyrrhic victory, because after the ECM spending ten years fighting this in court and telling their citizens USA beef was bad, that the International Tribunal declared that was false didn't get any press and the run of the mill citizen still believes those myths.
When you lose customers, even if wronged, you still lose all those years you didn't get to sell your product, plus all those that still think there is something wrong with it, even when it has been demonstrated there is not.:no:

Alagirl
Jan. 17, 2010, 09:32 PM
I have but one question:

Does it taste like chicken?

Or Tofu?

Bluey
Jan. 17, 2010, 09:39 PM
I have but one question:

Does it taste like chicken?

Or Tofu?

Pork.
Interesting article, gives you much to think about:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/science/article6936352.ece

Daydream Believer
Jan. 17, 2010, 10:48 PM
First, I didn't "attack" JSwan, I disagreed with her and what she posted, where she did say I didn't know what I was talking about.
I think that she didn't know what I meant either.
I don't think she "attacked" me and I sure didn't her.

Really? Not how it seemed to me at all. I truly don't think you know what you are talking about when it comes to what it takes to have truly first class grass finished beef as she produces.


Better quit repeating that, because it is not so.

Did you miss that I wasn't talking ONLY about beef? The EU won't buy our poultry either.

So is the EU lining up to buy our beef now they've been "proven" wrong? I kinda doubt it after reading this article:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/31/us/31meat.html?_r=1

tle
Jan. 17, 2010, 11:11 PM
Do you ever stop to think that, thanks to those terrible agribusiness companies, we in the USA have the most aboundant, most varied, clean and cheap food of any nation?


Hmm... this is an interesting statement.

Most abundant? True. We do have by far the most abundant food supply in the world.... although YMMV depending on how you define "food".

Most varied? Yep... probably. Everything from corn sweetened soda... to corn sweetened bread... to corn finished meats. Most varied is great!

Clean? Seriously? have you missed all the e. coli breakouts on everything? Salmonella issues, etc.? Yep... that's clean.

Cheap? Yep, it's cheap all right. The average american spends less (percent-wise) on their food budget than they used to. It's great because it gives us all more disposible income. However, it's so cheap that the farmers can't make a living without a government subsidy. And attempts to change this, regardless of the connections between "cheap food" with diseases like heart disease and diabetes, meets widespread resistence because of marketing... we're all programmed that we should have MORE disposable income than we have now... can you imagine what would happen if people started spending the appropriate amounts on food? So... cheap is good why??

You forgot Safe. Our industrial food supply is a bio-terrorists' wet dream. When there are, what, 7 slaughter houses in the whole country... that means MILLIONS of pounds of beef passing through those few points. And when the nation's supply of chicken is primarily controlled by what... 4 companies? OMG it's a major surprise that a terrorist hasn't done that yet.

And this is nothing to say of the added emissions from all the hauling of that meat around the country from producer to slaughterhouse to grocery store. Plus the pollution nussiance from huge CAFO feedlots.

OH and then there's the THOUSANDS of acres of corn produced in this country, heavily subsidized by the government... by and large the VAST majority of which cannot be directly eaten by human beings... they're either destined for animal feed or adjustment in a lab somewhere.


I will still say that the health problems of those that don't have food are considerably worse than trying to tweak any real and imaginary health problems some want to blame on the farmers.:rolleyes:

I dont' blame the farmers. Not at all. By and large, they are trying to make a living. i blame the agribusiness corporations... I blame the government. And whether or not you want to truly understand or not, the diseases that we are talking about are NOT imaginary. Hypocrates (you know... the doctor's oath guy) once stated "all diseases begin in the gut" ... and he is STILL right. We are slowly starting to discover this ... or rather rediscover it. Think about it... We are now seeing kids grow up that are the 2nd or 3rd generation of kids raised on microwave, tv dinners and fast food. Do you TRULY believe that this when compared with the rise in diabetes, autism spectrum diseases, etc. is really a coincidence?

Listen, no one is saying that YOU have to raise your cattle or any other livestock in a certain way. No one is saying that YOU have to eat a certain way (personallyl, I won't touch tofu with a 10' pole and rarely eat soy of any kind). But, in your initial posts to JSwan, you did come across and telling her (and the rest of us) that WE were wrong for wanting truly natural foods. That's why I think you got such a negative response from several people.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:52 AM
--"Listen, no one is saying that YOU have to raise your cattle or any other livestock in a certain way. No one is saying that YOU have to eat a certain way (personallyl, I won't touch tofu with a 10' pole and rarely eat soy of any kind). But, in your initial posts to JSwan, you did come across and telling her (and the rest of us) that WE were wrong for wanting truly natural foods. That's why I think you got such a negative response from several people."--

I am listening, but very few seem to be.:no:

ALL OF US raise our cattle the SAME, in nice pastures.
One very small difference, if we have 100 calves and two get sick and we medicate them, we don't sell them separatedly.
Why? Because those antibiotics they get have a withdrawal time we observe and sell way after that is over, by months.
That is no different that your kid getting an antibiotic if it got sick and be fine afterwards.
In those restricted marketing programs, you take that animal out and sell him later thru regular channels, I hope also watching that the withdrawal time is correct for what you gave it.

Feedlots are even more particular, because cattle are there a short time, but cattle there don't get sick much, because they are older and have mature immune systems.
The fines to miss one such animal are $10,000 a day and one year in jail.:eek:

There is NO REAL difference between cattle raised thru those labels or conventionally, before those weeks in the feedlot.


Some 40 years ago, someone figured a way to mass feed some of those cattle grain in feedlots for a few extra weeks, increasing the value, production and efficiency, by adding 1/3 more produce from the same animal.

That is a science with it's own department in universities, an industry that is extremely regulated.
They have enviromental engineers, nutritionist, veterinarians and a whole set of specialist working in feedlots.
That is how we get such a great amount of the best beef, cheapest, on demand, anyone ever had before and yes, safe.

You want to talk unsafe food, just go across the border to Mexico and see how food is grown, processed, sold, handled and cooked and tell me WE have unsafe food.

Perfect?
No one said it is, but for what food is, for the many steps it goes before it gets in our mouths, from the farmer that may not follow regulations well and some food may get contaminated, to the processor where someone drops the ball and lets it get contaminated there, to the one cooking it at home and didn't wash their hands right.:(
Those are many steps that can contaminate food and even then, few will get sick, or we would all of us be dropping around like flies.

I will repeat, even with our imperfections, we still have very safe food, safer than people ever had.
When some sickens people, it generally was because someone, somewhere, didn't follow regulations and that will happen in anything we do in life.

We are working so that doesn't happen, but perfect, I am sorry, we just can't promise that, neither can we in our own kitchens make the promise that we will perfectly handle our food.

By the way, there are USDA food inspectors in every part of our food chain and the most contaminated food they found in the past few years was in organically marketed vegetables.:eek:
Most of the contaminated samples the USDA inspectors find in cattle are in dairy, not beef cattle. That is a whole other industry.

That vegatables grown for the organically/natural market have more trouble keeping that food clean makes sense, if you think about it, because those growers have to work without so many techniques that in reality do make our food safer, like acid washes in the produce off the fields, etc.

There are trade-offs to all we do in life.
To have the food supply we have today in the USA, warts and all, is still a step way above what most of the world has AND we are trying to make it better every day.

You try feeding a nation, keeping the food available, aboundant, on demand, even out of season, clean and safe, cheap, have enough surplus to help feed other nations and see how you can do any better...AND GO DO IT.

Just look around the world and get back to me.:yes:

Those that bring the many overprocessed foods out there, please, use common sense when pointing fingers.:rolleyes:
It is up to us to decide what we eat.
That is like blaming the textile industry for all the ugly clothes people choose to wear.:p

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 09:28 AM
Those that bring the many overprocessed foods out there, please, use common sense when pointing fingers.:rolleyes:
It is up to us to decide what we eat.
That is like blaming the textile industry for all the ugly clothes people choose to wear.:p


That is such a misdirection, I'm not sure where to start.

You want to blame ONLY the consumer for their role in food-related illness. At least that's what you're saying with this ugly clothes commentary. You refuse to see that business and government are the issue... not the farmer, not the consumer.

Think about it... REALLY think. Have you visited a grocery store in a poorer urban population center lately? What is on the shelves? I can tell you... CHEAP food. These grocery stores stock processed, cheap crap that can barely be called food. People DON"T have much of a choice and what they have IS expensive, especially when compared to their income. The problem is that it is the government that is keeping crap food cheap via their subsidies and pro-agribusiness regulations. Good food there (like grass fed beef) can't compete because people with limited incomes end up choosing based on price alone... which then starts that viscious cycle you mentioned earlier where their tastes develop to what they've been eating (and it does happen as I nearly gagged on Taco Bell this weekend after 2 months not eating any fast food). How can you blame the customer in this case? They only see ugly clothing in their stores and even when they see something stylish, it doesnt' fit their budget. The ugly clothing IS more readily available because the government gives huge subsidies to the folks who grow the ugly stuff. in fact, the subsidies are the ONLY way those ugly growers can make a living!!! Unless they want to quit the grower way of life, they have to grow what the subsidy regulations say they can grow... and that's ugly.

I don't think you are listening because you keep coming up with excuses and straw man example of why your way works. No one is saying it doesnt' work for you. Why are you being so defensive?

Fact is that the stereotypical beef cattle operation where the cows are grain fed, end up in CAFOs, are sent through monsterous slaughterhouses to end up as part of THOUSANDS of different hamburgers which must then be shipped all over... may be the best BUSINESS model (thanks to government subsidies on feed ingredients)... but it is NOT the best model for the cattle, the consumer, or the environment. The negative results of big-business cattle include:

-- more pollution through increased shipping (both from farm to centralized slaughterhouses and from slaughter to grocery stores).
-- more pollution through CAFO manure issues
-- mono-culture fields that need to supply the grains -- grains which btw are UNNECESSARY except for finishing faster (aka more money quicker)
-- unnecessary use of drugs on cattle

These are negative byproducts that you can't dispute. The alternative? Locally grown, grass fed beef slaughtered on the farm or in locally operated slaughter facilities (or even mobile facilities). But the current regulations make this alternative difficult at best to implement.

You can say people prefer grain fed all you want. Fact is that more and more people ARE choosing natural foods over processed, and this in my mind includes grain fed cattle. The proof is all around you -- the number of farmer's markets increasing, the advertising dollars (in the millions I'm sure) that companies are spending to try and convince the public that their products are "natural" and/or good for them. That's a very telling sign that people ARE starting to pay attention.

Sing Mia Song
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:13 AM
Hate to argue with you but these 2 statements are the problem. 1) Corn finished? Why would a steer need to be corn fed at all??

Because, frankly, it's delicious. I prefer the taste to grass-fed.

I realize that finishing it this way makes for a product much higher in fat and cholesterol, and that's why I eat it sparingly. My point was that if meat in a vat tasted that good without the health trade-offs, I think there would be a market for it.

FWIW, I buy my beef from my hayman. While he does "finish" his, they are far from CAFO conditions. I've seen his system, from birth through to slaughter at a local, low-volume facility, and I am thoroughly convinced that it is as humane as raising animals for food can be.

Edited to add--I posted this response before reading through the last couple of pages. I have no desire to get in the middle of the current debate, but I just want to point out that there are many more processing plants in this country than four. I can think of three within a 20 mile radius alone. These are small-production shops, generally doing custom cut for local farmers. Those farmers may send grass-fed, corn-finished, whatever.

Carry on--just wanted to point out that there is a big middleground between grass-fed/locally processed and CAFO/industrial slaughter operation.

JSwan
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:25 AM
What she said is true - in my area there are no CAFO's. Beef producers that direct market finish their animals in a variety of ways. Not all are finished on grass. However - no animal travels far to be slaughtered, none go into feedlots, and there are fewer animal welfare concerns - including transmission of disease since most herds are closed. (no co-mingling.) There are distinct advantages that are not necessarily found on a balance sheet.

Same with poultry and pork - there are a variety of methods utilized, and not all producers direct market their products in the same manner.

You also don't need to live near a city/urban fringe to be such a producer. Many direct market their products over the Internet/Mail - and yes Bluey - it IS legal if they do it correctly.

Same with produce. Some operations are organic, most aren't. The main difference is that the producers are marketing their products directly to the consumer. In the case of any claim made on their USDA aproved label - they are participating in a certain type of program defined by the feds. I don't know why Bluey would think an organic operation is unsafe or unproductive - the ones I've seen around here are fantastic and more productive than a monoculture operation. Both in terms of profit as well as environmental safeguards.

So - if you saw a label on a pork chop that said "Naturally raised" - that is in fact a certification program that can only be placed on the USDA label IF that producer participates in that program.

It's similar to being "organic". You can't label our product organic if you're not certified organic. If you do - you're committing a crime.

The "grass-fed" claim on the USDA label means that producer participates in a program with very specific requirements - only one of which is that the animal finishes on grass.

I don't know what meat grown in a vat would be labeled. Soylent Green sounds pretty good.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 12:31 PM
You don't have CAFOs where you are because it is not the right environment for them, unless you confine them under roof.

In our arid West, cattle in pens are fine, there is rarely mud or really harsh conditions, the water is monitored with wells around each CAFO, that are tested monthly and so on.

Whoever said "cows" are fed grain, well, no, not beef cows, it would be too expensive and who wants a fat cow, that would not breed properly when too fat.
Fat cows are generally barren cows.

No, grain is only fed to very young heifers and steers, for the last few weeks of their lives before slaughter.
Many breeders have commercial herds that produce those kind of cattle, called terminal crosses, that do so well when fed grains.
They keep a separate herd for their replacement cows, with a little different breed or mix in them, better at reproducing.

Many tests have shown that cattle are not any "healtier" for us before, off grass, than after they have been fed grain.
Those fed on grains are fed with rations that promote less fat deposition, more meat and when they are slaughtered, they are graded and the ones that still got too fat are discounted, because that fat is trimmed.
In the end, the difference is not on being any "healtier" if slaughtered as grass fed or after finishing on grain for a few weels.
Read the article I posted from research over the last 50 years, that clearly stated that is so.
There is more nutritional differences between each individual slaughtered, than between grass only or grain fed.

The IMPORTANT difference is that grass fed beef will have yellow fat, which is a turn off to many consumers in the meat case, the meat is darker and drier and tougher, so you have to cook it differently.

You want to make stew, hamburgers, roast cooked for very long, then any kind of beef will be fine.
You want steaks on the grill, well, there will be few slaughtered off grass that will compare with grain fed ones.

That is ok, I am not judging, I am stating the facts as now practically a lifetime in the business has shown to be so.

I think that eventually, meat in a vat will be a good solution, because they can give it whatever nutritional values, texture and taste anyone may wish and no cattle have to be slaughtered.

Believe it or not, people raising cattle know they are going to end in a plate and no one likes that idea, but it is how the world is, how humans have used that one renewable, natural resource our grasses are for thousands of years.
That is why adding to the amount of meat from one animal by grain finishing was such a great advance and we can have even more meat from less cows.

So, if one day we don't need to do that any more, we have a better mausetrap to get our need for proteins and all other only animals can give to us today, that is fine also.:cool:

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 12:51 PM
Many tests have shown that cattle are not any "healtier" for us before, off grass, than after they have been fed grain.

source?


Read the article I posted from research over the last 50 years, that clearly stated that is so.

I couldn't find it. Can you post it again please?


The IMPORTANT difference is that grass fed beef will have yellow fat, which is a turn off to many consumers in the meat case, the meat is darker and drier and tougher, so you have to cook it differently.

You want to make stew, hamburgers, roast cooked for very long, then any kind of beef will be fine.
You want steaks on the grill, well, there will be few slaughtered off grass that will compare with grain fed ones.

Next time we grill Bourbon Steak from our share of the grass-fed cow we buy every year, I'll let you know. It's the most awesome food ever!! And we do not "cook it differently" because it was grass fed. That's silly.


That is ok, I am not judging, I am stating the facts as now practically a lifetime in the business has shown to be so.

Yep... that statement explains a lot.


Believe it or not, people raising cattle know they are going to end in a plate and no one likes that idea,

huh? you make it sound like ranchers are weeping at the thought of sending their cattle to slaughter. That's why they are there! That's why most of my rabbits are around -- to provide me and my family with food. meat in a vat is NOT going to replace that -- EW!

If you want a good handle on how the consumer public is thinking and what is important to them (which I think you really should look into because I believe you're a little off base in your assumptions here).... think about how much of the corporate advertising dollars are now going towards touting claims of being healthy. Everything from labels that say "no growth hormones" to "organic" to even "grass fed" or "no anti-biotics used". There is NO WAY corporations would go to the trouble of putting those claims out there... NO WAY they'd spend that kind of $$$$$ if they weren't seeing a trend and getting a return. The trend IS towards naturally raised meats and real food. No way meat in a vat makes it in that kind of climate.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:12 PM
---"If you want a good handle on how the consumer public is thinking and what is important to them (which I think you really should look into because I believe you're a little off base in your assumptions here).... think about how much of the corporate advertising dollars are now going towards touting claims of being healthy. Everything from labels that say "no growth hormones" to "organic" to even "grass fed" or "no anti-biotics used". There is NO WAY corporations would go to the trouble of putting those claims out there... NO WAY they'd spend that kind of $$$$$ if they weren't seeing a trend and getting a return. The trend IS towards naturally raised meats and real food. No way meat in a vat makes it in that kind of climate."---

I know that and that is one reason we don't sell to the local "organic/natural" provider feedlot, because we think it is not quite ethical to do so, when in the end there is NO difference in the product, just the marketing makes it sound so.

I know, the world is changing, ethics is not what they use to be, do what you have to do to make a buck and run with it, the consumer is king and do what the consumer wants, even if it is not quite honest to do so.

Well, that is fine, but we don't have to do that and don't.
If it gets where we have to, we will, but we are not there, yet.:(


Here is one of many, this one an article that was a review of many others over the years, indicating that produce is practically the same nutritionally, the differences few, no matter what label you hang on it:

http://health.msn.com/nutrition/articlepage.aspx?cp-documentid=100242535&GT1=31036

And one man's opinion:

http://www.latimes.com/features/food/la-fo-calcook1-2009jul01%2C0%2C2885942.story

I know that all selling any product have to convince consumers to buy it.
The hard part is that we don't have consumers that are truly educated, they just follow whatever statements they happen to read or hear in their social circle and those are in many cases grossly biased, if not part of agendas

Right now, the HSUS just bought into the Jack In The Box chain of food service.
They want it to run the way they think it should be run and, as someone mentioned, it probably will end as a Tofu In The Box food server.
Talk about agendas and how to vie for customers.;)
Maybe we ought to buy stock in that?

Chief2
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:20 PM
Okay, here's how the public is thinking: my General Practitioner is telling all of his patients to limit their intake of red meat to once a month or less. That includes all cow, pig, deer, sheep and goat meat, and I'm sure anything that has been manufactured in a lab will automatically be nixed as well. The reason: the cholesterol in it is clogging your arteries and killing you faster than if you if you ate like (gasp!) a vegetarian. I am not a vegetarian, but we haven't eaten red meat in years, and like a lot of other people, have no intention of starting that again. Heck, I don't even like cows.

Well, given the current climate for wanting to know where your food came from, the lab-created meat will certainly provide provenance for that. But the thought of ingesting that...gag.

arabhorse2
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:25 PM
I dunno about anyone else, but I am *not* eating Meat From A Lab. :no: Blech.

Does anyone besides me watch Better Off Ted? They did a show about growing meat in the lab, and how they had to force the taste tester to try it. Hilarious episode, although it did throw in some real science, like how to make the texture and taste closer to meat and not something disgustingly squishy.

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:29 PM
Thanks for the link. However, in your defense of big agribusiness practices, did you read the article yourself? All the way to the end? Yes, it did state that limited differences could be found between varieties of organic vs non-organic foods. Didn't say NONE however. And then you get to the end:


"You have to also look at what you're not getting" with organic foods, she said. "Maybe it's not a big difference nutritionally, but conventional products may have more pesticides."

And that's a particularly important issue for children, she said.

"We know that young children are getting the nutrition, whatever choice they make, but we also have to look at the pesticide issue," Rarback said. "A study published in Environmental Health Perspectives found that children eating conventionally grown fruit had pesticide residue in their urine, which decreased after just five days on an organic diet."

The production of organic food is subject to a variety of regulations, including those that govern the use of pesticides and other chemicals in fruits and vegetables and the use of medicines in animals, the authors of the review noted in their study, which will be published in the September issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Rarback indicated that the ability to get solid research on organic versus conventionally produced products is hampered by variations in the production process.

"There are so many variables," she said. "Where is something grown? Where is it shipped from? How long was it on the truck? There are going to be variables in terms of nutrition just from production methods."

Nothing in life lives in a vacuum, including our food. For me? small nutritional benefits whatever they may be, plus BETTER taste, plus NOT getting the icky stuff, plus NOT adding to the problems that come with the logistics of big agribusiness.... that's enough for me.



I know that and that is one reason we don't sell to the local "organic/natural" provider feedlot, because we think it is not quite ethical to do so, when in the end there is NO difference in the product, just the marketing makes it sound so.

So people who are marketing as organic are unethical? REALLY? Where do you get this? They are following the rules per what organic labelling is. How is that not ethical???

REALLY????

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:34 PM
Okay, here's how the public is thinking: my General Practitioner is telling all of his patients to limit their intake of red meat to once a month or less. That includes all cow, pig, deer, sheep and goat meat, and I'm sure anything that has been manufactured in a lab will automatically be nixed as well. The reason: the cholesterol in it is clogging your arteries and killing you faster than if you if you ate like (gasp!) a vegetarian.


Just FYI and not attacking your personal choices or anything, but you do know that...

1) GPs are not tremendously versed in nutrition, but rather are medical doctors who are trained in medicine... in treating symptoms.

2) that there is more to the cholestrol issue than people really realize (how overall diet and not just "red meat" contribute or not, much less the anecdotal evidence that exists to point out the differences between (sorry bluey) grain-fed and grass fed beef).

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:35 PM
Okay, here's how the public is thinking: my General Practitioner is telling all of his patients to limit their intake of red meat to once a month or less. That includes all cow, pig, deer, sheep and goat meat, and I'm sure anything that has been manufactured in a lab will automatically be nixed as well. The reason: the cholesterol in it is clogging your arteries and killing you faster than if you if you ate like (gasp!) a vegetarian. I am not a vegetarian, but we haven't eaten red meat in years, and like a lot of other people, have no intention of starting that again. Heck, I don't even like cows.

Well, given the current climate for wanting to know where your food came from, the lab-created meat will certainly provide provenance for that. But the thought of ingesting that...gag.

We need to put those statements in perspective:

http://www.newsweek.com/id/228720?GT1=43002

http://www.agweb.com/get_article.aspx?pageid=152537

You may gag, but people in third world countries that don't have enough to eat, or not enough protein sources, will be delighted, no matter where it comes from and there are millions of them out there.

http://www.consumerfreedom.com/news_detail.cfm/h/3981-nudging-america-to-give-up-meat

http://www.agweb.com/get_article.aspx?pageid=152537

My doctor told me, after reading thru the food diary I kept, that I needed to seriously INCREASE my protein intake, to eat more meat.

You have to follow whatever YOUR doctor thinks is right FOR YOU.
Each one of us are individuals and not all process what we eat the same.

Just think, from all the millions out there, there are a relatively few that need to heed any dietary restrictions.
It would be inadequate to make sweeping declarations for all.
Look what happen with all kinds of oils over the years, where each one supposed to be "best", after some years, was found not to be so good any more.

MODERATION is the key for all, other than that, restrictions only as indicated.:yes:

As I said before, we are very, very lucky to have this problem of being able to choose what we eat, unlike so many others in this world, that don't even have enough to eat.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 01:49 PM
---"So people who are marketing as organic are unethical? REALLY? Where do you get this? They are following the rules per what organic labelling is. How is that not ethical???

REALLY????"---

Let me explain this a little bit better.
I think it is ethically questionable to market a generic product, the exact same everyone is producing and, by certifying it follows certain rules, that all anyway follow except a few details to make it "different", but that don't mean squat to the end product, sell it as "special".

That is similar as one trainer selling a school horse as the horse it is and another making a fancy broschure, a great video and making that horse look like a one of the kind and extra fancy.

Guess that some people are a little bit better at selling to the consumer what they want to buy and making them happy that they bought a "better" or "different" product.

I don't know how else to put this, without insulting some, just because they may not agree with me.:(

JSwan
Jan. 18, 2010, 02:10 PM
If it's different then it can and should be marketed differently. You can't have it both ways, Bluey. It is different. And the consumer has a right to know what is in the food they're eating. The consumer has been conditioned to believe whatever the food industry has told them to believe - just like the tobacco industry made smoking "sexy". 9 out of 10 doctors smoke ___________.

But what you're really saying is that you believe that all food should come out of Monsanto and Cargill. Their seeds. Their patents. Their breeds of livestock (and of course those can be patented too)

A complete monopoly over global food production, with a very select elite few in control.

The food will be produced to their standard. They will have sole control over what everyone eats - and how much salt or chemicals can be contained in the products - and of course their scientists will tell us how much pesticide and hormones are "safe". It will all taste the same. Be the same. And billions will be spent trying to avert disaster when a single organism threatens to destroy what amounts to global monoculture crops and animals. No genetic diversity. No communities. It's the same as making a car. Assembly line. Poke the animal, prod the animal, it's not a living being - it's a car with blood instead of hydraulic fluid. Take care of it because it's worth X but don't consider it a living being.

Oh yes - that's lovely. I'll take a second helping of Glop.

dmalbone
Jan. 18, 2010, 02:34 PM
My doctor told me, after reading thru the food diary I kept, that I needed to seriously INCREASE my protein intake, to eat more meat.


Unless you have a medical condition we're not aware of, I can't believe that you were eating a balanced diet and were "seriously" lacking in protein. As I'm sure you've heard from all of my ranting, I'm a vegetarian and am well-versed on the "but vegetarians don't get enough protein. I'm going to dieeeeee." etc. etc. Fact is, it is truly a shockingly small amount of protein a person needs in comparison to the large amount of meat that the average american eats. With a well-rounded diet you shouldn't need to eat meat to get your protein.

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 02:49 PM
We need to put those statements in perspective:

http://www.newsweek.com/id/228720?GT1=43002

http://www.agweb.com/get_article.aspx?pageid=152537

You may gag, but people in third world countries that don't have enough to eat, or not enough protein sources, will be delighted, no matter where it comes from and there are millions of them out there.


Yes there are people in the world that will eat vat-meat... and there are peopel who will be thankful for it. But there are people who WILL NOT eat it. Not sure waht either of those referenced articles had to do with it except to show a reference to something.

Also, no one knows if there will be any health reprocussions long term! One thing I do know is that EVERY time we try and "control" mother nature, we get screwed. Antibiotic overuse... pesticides... chemicals... hormones... you name it. Eventually it comes around to bit us in the backside! We are living, breathing tissue that has certain needs - provided for us in the world around us (hello evolution!). Why do we keep trying to screw with that? Well... I know why -- $$.


MODERATION is the key for all, other than that, restrictions only as indicated.:yes:

Absolutely. Which is yet another reason I avoid grain fed beef. I already get all kinds of corn in my diet if I'm not careful -- everything from beef and other meats (corn fed) to soda/ketchup/bread/etc that contain HFCS. Even the recent pro-HFCS commercials said it -- ok in small doses. But it's hard NOT to get in HUGE doses because it's in EVERYThING!! I can't remember if there was an actual statistic or if it was just a "disproportionately large amount" but in the documentary "King Corn" I believe there was a statistic about how testing is now showing how much corn is in our diets and its an astronomical amount!

I just found this stat:

Average annual HFCS consumption per US individual in 1970 - 6.0 pounds. In 2007, that figure skyrocketed to 73.5 pounds per year!!

I know it's a LITTLE OT from what we've been discussing, but it does point to another of my reasons why I try to avoid grain fed beef.

Anyway, I do have to agree wtih JSwan... you can't have it both ways. They're either the same or they aren't and marketing the difference is hardly unethical.

greysandbays
Jan. 18, 2010, 03:52 PM
Blech on grass fed beef. I sure wouldn't pay extra for "grass finished" beef, though I might put up with it if it was very inexpensive. Might as well eat antelope or bog venison.

I can stand venision if it's "corn fed" (as in the deer had considerable access to corn fields), but the "wild" stuff from brush/bog country is HORRIBLE and I don't think grass fed beef is much better.

But when people think they have a moral point to prove, they'll start liking most anything and trying to push it on to everybody.

tle
Jan. 18, 2010, 04:01 PM
Guess it's good then that we have a choice in this country, eh?

JSwan
Jan. 18, 2010, 04:10 PM
But when people think they have a moral point to prove, they'll start liking most anything and trying to push it on to everybody.

If you're referring to folks who don't like the taste of grain fed beef - well let's just say I really don't care if you eat enough meat to drop dead of a heart attack. None of my business.

But it's possible that the large scale industrial approach has its detractors and its problems. And pointing that out, for some reason, makes a lot of people nervous.

All local producers are doing is omitting the middle man. They're direct marketing products. And they're doing it pretty efficiently, and without having many of the welfare and biosecurity and environmental problems of large farms.

There is much to be admired with large scale agriculture - and much that is questionable. If you don't care - fine. Others do. I'd rather large, medium and small producers work that out within agriculture than some moronic AR nut who thinks farming is all sunshine and rainbows.

And another fallacy is that the products are expensive. Not true. The highest price you pay per pound is at the grocery store. Buying a side of beef or pork is the best value per pound - whether finished on grain or grass. You just need a larger freezer and sorry - a steer isn't made entirely of T-Bones.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:19 PM
If it's different then it can and should be marketed differently. You can't have it both ways, Bluey. It is different. And the consumer has a right to know what is in the food they're eating. The consumer has been conditioned to believe whatever the food industry has told them to believe - just like the tobacco industry made smoking "sexy". 9 out of 10 doctors smoke ___________.

But what you're really saying is that you believe that all food should come out of Monsanto and Cargill. Their seeds. Their patents. Their breeds of livestock (and of course those can be patented too)

A complete monopoly over global food production, with a very select elite few in control.

The food will be produced to their standard. They will have sole control over what everyone eats - and how much salt or chemicals can be contained in the products - and of course their scientists will tell us how much pesticide and hormones are "safe". It will all taste the same. Be the same. And billions will be spent trying to avert disaster when a single organism threatens to destroy what amounts to global monoculture crops and animals. No genetic diversity. No communities. It's the same as making a car. Assembly line. Poke the animal, prod the animal, it's not a living being - it's a car with blood instead of hydraulic fluid. Take care of it because it's worth X but don't consider it a living being.

Oh yes - that's lovely. I'll take a second helping of Glop.


I don't know why you go off on such a tangent.
You don't know what I think about how the big ag companies work, not at all.
All I am stating is what I know of the many ways we can raise and market beef and why and that is all I have been saying, if you read without assuming this and that, that I really have not said at all.:confused:

You do seem to have a grudge about some of those companies and how they do business and went off on a tangent about that.
That is not my concern, I don't have anything to do with them or what they do.:no:

As far as small producers, we know that they just can't produce all people need, at all, that is why there is such a demand for what the larger ones can produce so much more efficiently and the imports we have to get to fill the needs of the companies that sell beef.

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:23 PM
Guess it's good then that we have a choice in this country, eh?

There is an old phrase that states: Don't complain about farmers with your mouth full:;)

http://www.cattlenetwork.com/Jolley--Elitist-Foodies-Need-To-Step-Back/2010-01-04/alpharma_Article.aspx?oid=971874&fid=CN-LATEST_NEWS_&hq_e=el&hq_m=585089&hq_l=2&hq_v=bac3336c15

Here is some of what he has to say, copied for those that are allergic to links.
He does make some valid points, although some here won't like it:

---"The food chain in America – from the ranch-to-restaurant, gate-to-plate, farm-to-fork, whatever you want to call it – is an amazingly complex but efficient model. It puts the product on the table quickly and at an affordable price. The centuries old curse of having to spend a majority of our waking hours and cash on feeding our families and fending off famine is a distant memory. Fortunately.

And it’s modern farming techniques practiced by modern farmers that have afforded us that luxury. To attack today’s agriculture because it doesn’t fit someone’s overly romanticized concept of what it should be or once was is at once short-sighted and dangerous. To adequately feed the earth’s growing population, we need all the efficiencies modern technology can muster and that necessarily means better equipment, improved seed stock, widely available veterinarian services and the wise application of fertilizers. "---

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:32 PM
Self explanatory:

http://www.feedstuffs.com/ME2/dirmod.asp?sid=F4D1A9DFCD974EAD8CD5205E15C1CB42&nm=Breaking+News&type=news&mod=News&mid=A3D60400B4204079A76C4B1B129CB433&tier=3&nid=562A236C8BEF4BF19972A7B87E1E34C4



---"Cattle production systems does not affect E. coli prevalence



(8/24/2009)


A new study suggests that when compared to conventionally raised beef cattle, organic and natural production systems do not impact antibiotic susceptibility of Escherichia coli O157:H7. This discovery emphasizes that although popular for their suggested health benefit, little is actually known about the effects of organic and natural beef production on foodborne pathogens. The researchers from Kansas State University detail their findings in the August 2009 issue of the journal Applied & Environmental Microbiology.

Increased outbreaks of foodborne illness, as well as the growing awareness and popularity of organic and natural foods, have forced many cattle farmers to adopt new production methods to meet consumer demand for safe and healthy beef. Organic food sources receive only certified organic feed, are raised without the use of antibiotics, hormones and other veterinary products, and are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Natural production guidelines completely restrict the use of antibiotics and hormones but do allow non-organic food sources and are only regulated by the brand name owner.

Cattle are major reservoirs of E. coli O157:H7 and their feces are the main source of food and water contamination that lead to foodborne illness in humans. In the study, fecal samples were collected from organically and naturally raised cattle and tested for the presence of E. coli O157:H7. Results showed prevalence rates of 14.8% in organically raised and 14.2% in naturally raised cattle. These E. coli O157:H7 levels were comparable to those previously identified in conventionally raised cattle, the researchers said. Additionally, the minimum inhibitory concentration of a variety of antibiotics for E. coli O157:H7 isolates were analyzed to determine the effects of all three production systems and no significant difference in antibiotic susceptibility was noted.

"The prevalences of E. coli O157:H7 that we observed in organically and naturally raised beef cattle were similar to the previously reported prevalence in conventionally raised cattle," the researchers said. "No major differences in antibiotic susceptibility patterns among the isolates were observed."

The article citation is S. Reinstein, J.T. Fox, X. Shi, M.J. Alam, D.G. Renter and T.G. Nagaraja. 2009. Prevalence of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in organically and naturally raised beef cattle. Applied & Environmental Microbiology 75(16):5421-5423."----

greysandbays
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:40 PM
If you're referring to folks who don't like the taste of grain fed beef - well let's just say I really don't care if you eat enough meat to drop dead of a heart attack. None of my business.
I'm referring to folks who get on some moral high horse about how grain-fed is evil, corn is evil, large-scale farming is evil, and anybody who prefers these is evil/stupid/imoral/socially irresponsible.

I have no opinion on people who simply prefer one or the other or neither for taste's sake, because like they said about the woman who kissed the cow: "There ain't no accountin' fer taste".


But it's possible that the large scale industrial approach has its detractors and its problems. And pointing that out, for some reason, makes a lot of people nervous.
The small scale "green" approach has its detractors and it's problems also. And pointing that out, for some reason, makes a lot of people hysterical and judgemental.



All local producers are doing is omitting the middle man. They're direct marketing products. And they're doing it pretty efficiently, and without having many of the welfare and biosecurity and environmental problems of large farms.

They also frequently milking the moral superiority angle for all it's worth. If they can conduct their "omitting the middle man", etc, without that, I'm happy to support them.



There is much to be admired with large scale agriculture - and much that is questionable. If you don't care - fine. Others do. I'd rather large, medium and small producers work that out within agriculture than some moronic AR nut who thinks farming is all sunshine and rainbows.

And there is much that is admirable AND questionable/problematic about small scale agriculture as well. By and large, there's enough questionablity in both large and small scale ag to go around.



And another fallacy is that the products are expensive. Not true. The highest price you pay per pound is at the grocery store. Buying a side of beef or pork is the best value per pound - whether finished on grain or grass. You just need a larger freezer and sorry - a steer isn't made entirely of T-Bones.

If you buy a side of beef or pork piece by piece at the the grocery store, yes, it would be the most expensive. But if you forego the fancier cuts, it comes out about even and you don't have to worry about half a cow/pig spoiling if your freezer craps out on you or there is an extended power outage. And freezers (or the electricity to run them -- and TPTB in DC want to make that electricty even more expensive!) aren't free, so that further cuts into the "best value" aspect.

S1969
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:54 PM
There is an old phrase that states: Don't complain about farmers with your mouth full:;)

Oh please. So unless we are starving we can have nothing to say about how the food we EAT is produced?

That probably goes along with the statements
"Don't complain about your doctor unless you're on your deathbed"

"Don't complain about your educational system unless you're illiterate"

"Don't complain about the financial industry unless you're homeless"

Wait, that doesn't make any sense; we have every right to complain about all of the above, why not food? Why can't we have a discussion about the food we pay for and eat?

Bluey, I'm sorry I missed all the fun today. I didn't realize that this thread was about grass-fed beef. But I guess I didn't miss anything because it's the same old yada yada....obviously there is no other perspective than yours. :rolleyes:

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 06:58 PM
Oh please. So unless we are starving we can have nothing to say about how the food we EAT is produced?

That probably goes along with the statements
"Don't complain about your doctor unless you're on your deathbed"

"Don't complain about your educational system unless you're illiterate"

"Don't complain about the financial industry unless you're homeless"

Wait, that doesn't make any sense; we have every right to complain about all of the above, why not food? Why can't we have a discussion about the food we pay for and eat?

Bluey, I'm sorry I missed all the fun today. I didn't realize that this thread was about grass-fed beef. But I guess I didn't miss anything because it's the same old yada yada....obviously there is no other perspective than yours. :rolleyes:

Yes, I was teasing, even if you didn't care to see that, but the fellow writing that article quoted definitely was not.:no:

Of course there are other perspectives out there. Many!:eek:
Have you not been reading other's posts?;)

greysandbays
Jan. 18, 2010, 07:12 PM
Oh please. So unless we are starving we can have nothing to say about how the food we EAT is produced?

That probably goes along with the statements
"Don't complain about your doctor unless you're on your deathbed"

"Don't complain about your educational system unless you're illiterate"

"Don't complain about the financial industry unless you're homeless"


Ummm, no, dearie, that would go along with

"Don't complain about your doctor when you are the picture of fine health"

"Don't complain about your educational system if you can read at a PhD level"

and

"Don't complain about the financial industry when you live in a mansion with no mortage"

People who have been really, really hungry (and not "hungry" in the sense of eating Ramen noodles because they've frittered away all their money on some stupid horse) have a different perspective on food than fat and sassy horsey women with an over-active social concience.

Christa P
Jan. 18, 2010, 07:14 PM
Yes there are people in the world that will eat vat-meat... and there are peopel who will be thankful for it. But there are people who WILL NOT eat it. Not sure waht either of those referenced articles had to do with it except to show a reference to something.


Absolutely. Which is yet another reason I avoid grain fed beef. I already get all kinds of corn in my diet if I'm not careful -- everything from beef and other meats (corn fed) to soda/ketchup/bread/etc that contain HFCS. Even the recent pro-HFCS commercials said it -- ok in small doses. But it's hard NOT to get in HUGE doses because it's in EVERYThING!! I can't remember if there was an actual statistic or if it was just a "disproportionately large amount" but in the documentary "King Corn" I believe there was a statistic about how testing is now showing how much corn is in our diets and its an astronomical amount!

I just found this stat:

Average annual HFCS consumption per US individual in 1970 - 6.0 pounds. In 2007, that figure skyrocketed to 73.5 pounds per year!!

I know it's a LITTLE OT from what we've been discussing, but it does point to another of my reasons why I try to avoid grain fed beef.

Anyway, I do have to agree wtih JSwan... you can't have it both ways. They're either the same or they aren't and marketing the difference is hardly unethical.

Has anybody else read the book from Isaac Asimov, one of the prequels to the Foundation Trilogy. The population of a planet (Trantor - the hub of the Empire) is so used to food grown from bacteria in a Vat they think anything else is gross.

Who knows, it could happen.


As for HFCS, I can say my intake is very little to none. It gives me Acid Reflux if I have more than a tiny bit so I read labels VERY carefully, buy organic as much as possible. I have been noticing more products removing HFCS from thier ingredients which I think is a good thing.

Christa

Bluey
Jan. 18, 2010, 07:36 PM
Ummm, no, dearie, that would go along with

"Don't complain about your doctor when you are the picture of fine health"

"Don't complain about your educational system if you can read at a PhD level"

and

"Don't complain about the financial industry when you live in a mansion with no mortage"

People who have been really, really hungry (and not "hungry" in the sense of eating Ramen noodles because they've frittered away all their money on some stupid horse) have a different perspective on food than fat and sassy horsey women with an over-active social concience.

I grew up hungry, right after WWII.
Food was rationed, we had TWO eggs a week for our family, because there were two kids under 10.

Many don't even know how lucky so many of us here are.:yes:
We are who we are by a mere accident of birth.
Sobering thought.

JSwan
Jan. 18, 2010, 09:24 PM
Oh here we go again. God forbid we say no to HFCS or we'll all starve to death.

Give it a rest, Bluey. If you or GAB have problems with local farmers making fraudulent claims on their labeling - turn 'em in to the feds.

It sounds like what really galls the both of you is that anyone would question the methods or practices of industrial agriculture. Well - tough. Either address the concerns working across the industry or answer to the animal rights nuts who don't know what they're talking about but have plenty of ugly photos to show people.

No practice or method it without its problems - but to assert that an entire segment of an industry is making fraudulent claims - just because YOU don't like the way the food tastes - dear God. That's just stupid.

Hell - you might as well eat the crap grown in a vat and allow animal agriculture to die off. That way the AR nuts can start a new "awareness campaign" on the possibility of consciousness in vat grown meat. Save the vat meat!

And enough with the emotional drivel about WWII. The opposite of factory farming is not widows and orphans fighting over an egg. There is NOTHING wrong with questioning the merits of current and proposed production methods. Especially when those doing the questioning are also farmers. Deal with it.

S1969
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:24 PM
Ummm, no, dearie, that would go along with

"Don't complain about your doctor when you are the picture of fine health"

"Don't complain about your educational system if you can read at a PhD level"

and

"Don't complain about the financial industry when you live in a mansion with no mortage"

Yeah, I suppose yours make more sense than mine, sweetcheeks. [Is *dearie* supposed to be some sort of insult?] Grow up.

But the whole concept is still stupid. It's something farmers/farming industry people say when they don't want to get into an actual discussion about methods and practices. Just because I don't own a cattle ranch doesn't mean that I can't appreciate the difficulties of a cattle rancher. Every job has it's difficulties, but that doesn't exempt the rest of us from criticism.

greysandbays
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:38 PM
Oh here we go again. God forbid we say no to HFCS or we'll all starve to death.

Give it a rest, Bluey. If you or GAB have problems with local farmers making fraudulent claims on their labeling - turn 'em in to the feds.

It sounds like what really galls the both of you is that anyone would question the methods or practices of industrial agriculture. Well - tough. Either address the concerns working across the industry or answer to the animal rights nuts who don't know what they're talking about but have plenty of ugly photos to show people.

No practice or method it without its problems - but to assert that an entire segment of an industry is making fraudulent claims - just because YOU don't like the way the food tastes - dear God. That's just stupid.

Hell - you might as well eat the crap grown in a vat and allow animal agriculture to die off. That way the AR nuts can start a new "awareness campaign" on the possibility of consciousness in vat grown meat. Save the vat meat!

And enough with the emotional drivel about WWII. The opposite of factory farming is not widows and orphans fighting over an egg. There is NOTHING wrong with questioning the merits of current and proposed production methods. Especially when those doing the questioning are also farmers. Deal with it.

"Deal with it" like you apparently deal with people not being overly impressed with your drivel against factory farming?

If you are holding yourself up as some sort of vunderfarmer in the "back to natural" movement, you got a ways to go. YOU'd look like a "factory farm" compared to the way my grandfathers farmed. Only they did it because they were too poor to farm any other way, not because they thought themselves virtuous -- where as you can play around with it because you are rich enough to permit the luxury of self-congratulation.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 07:20 AM
---"What I'm not seeing is similar disclosure from people like Bluey. It is intellectually dishonest. I expected better.
"---

I was not going to answer to all that long post and what you say, that is just not so and some of it insulting, because everyone can read what I posted and the links I made and clearly see that I am not saying what you assume, AT ALL, as I have said previously.:)

By the way, sorry that my comment about growing up hungry offended you.:(

I am not saying anything at all about who should be in business, just explaining how agriculture works, the small and large operations, what is good and not so good about them, AS I SEE IT, just as others are speaking about what they believe.

I have time and again said that no one is perfect, that there is much to be done, but that, looking at the big picture, we have the aboundance we have because we did find a way to commercialize agriculture and that has provided us, warts and all, with the world we have today, that is still way better than anything we had before, including these forums we are debating on.;)

I will repeat, no one is perfect, there is much lacking in all we do as individuals and as societies, we are working on improving all the time, with successes and failures.
I think that, in general, we are way ahead by having commercial agriculture in our western world, better than if we still had to live like most people used to live and still many do in the world.:eek:

Edited to add that you deleted your post.
That is a fine way to debate.:confused:

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 07:50 AM
The notion that small and medium sized producers that direct market and keep their profits are "vunderfarmers" is laughable. :lol: Tell that to the producers here that have not only kept their farms, they're profitable without gov't handouts and don't have to contract with or turn their profits over to some huge corporation.

These are nothing more than small and medium sized local businesses. The intent of owning your own business is to make profit and have greater control over your life and product.

These people are making a profit and cutting out large corporations, legally and ethically, and for some reason it really galls the both of you.

If you don't want to purchase local products - then don't. There is nothing unsafe, illegal, or unethical about buying food from a local farmer.

It does not imbue the customer with special powers or moral superiority - but it does keep a local business open and it keeps money and businesses IN the community rather than products and money flowing out. It also lessens the transport time to slaughter. It also reduces co-mingling of animals with unknown vaccination and exposure histories. It also keeps associated businesses profitable and providing decent jobs - with benefits. How horrible.

What else do you have a problem with? Cabinetmakers? Seamstresses? Good Lord.

ETA - I deleted it because it was too long, Bluey. I don't give a crap about "debating". I've got no problems with large scale agriculture in general - but don't try and pass it off as perfect. No production method is perfect, and none is without drawbacks and problems. I've posted many times about drawbacks to the small and medium sized operations - and I've yet to read the same from you. I go into specifics. Your position is - shut up and eat. Don't think too hard about where your food comes from.

Stop ridiculing a business model you know nothing about. And I'd have no problem with your posts if you weren't so condescending and patronizing - and always played the "starving child of WWII" card. You think you're the ONLY person on this BB whose family was affected by WWII? I'm not offended - I know that argument for what it is. It's emotional manipulation designed to shut people up and get them to do what you want. You can advocate for your position without playing that very weak and transparent card. Again, no one is advocating that we return to a pre-industrial society, and no one is saying that we must scrabble in the dirt for mealy potatoes in order to be virtuous.

S1969
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:05 AM
I have time and again said that no one is perfect, that there is much to be done, but that, looking at the big picture, we have the aboundance we have because we did find a way to commercialize agriculture and that has provided us, warts and all, with the world we have today, that is still way better than anything we had before, including these forums we are debating on.;)

You may say this now, but generally you defensively reply to others that they are uninformed, biased, or jumping on the hot topic after reading one book by Michael Pollan or Joel Salatin. Every other industry in this country has to deal with public scrutiny and change accordingly, the agricultural industry is no exception.

We certainly don't stop looking for improvements in the auto industry just because "at least it's better than what we had before (you know, like walking.)"

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:11 AM
The notion that small and medium sized producers that direct market and keep their profits are "vunderfarmers" is laughable. :lol: Tell that to the producers here that have not only kept their farms, they're profitable without gov't handouts and don't have to contract with or turn their profits over to some huge corporation.

These are nothing more than small and medium sized local businesses. The intent of owning your own business is to make profit and have greater control over your life and product.

These people are making a profit and cutting out large corporations, legally and ethically, and for some reason it really galls the both of you.

If you don't want to purchase local products - then don't. There is nothing unsafe, illegal, or unethical about buying food from a local farmer.

It does not imbue the customer with special powers or moral superiority - but it does keep a local business open and it keeps money and businesses IN the community rather than products and money flowing out. It also lessens the transport time to slaughter. It also reduces co-mingling of animals with unknown vaccination and exposure histories. It also keeps associated businesses profitable and providing decent jobs - with benefits. How horrible.

What else do you have a problem with? Cabinetmakers? Seamstresses? Good Lord.

ETA - I deleted it because it was too long, Bluey. I don't give a crap about "debating". I've got no problems with large scale agriculture in general - but don't try and pass it off as perfect. No production method is perfect, and none is without drawbacks and problems. I've posted many times about drawbacks to the small and medium sized operations - and I've yet to read the same from you. I go into specifics. Your position is - shut up and eat. Don't think too hard about where your food comes from.

Stop ridiculing a business model you know nothing about. And I'd have no problem with your posts if you weren't so condescending and patronizing - and always played the "starving child of WWII" card. You think you're the ONLY person on this BB whose family was affected by WWII? I'm not offended - I know that argument for what it is. It's emotional manipulation designed to shut people up and get them to do what you want. You can advocate for your position without playing that very weak and transparent card.

Ok, this time I will quote the whole post, just in case.;)

All I need to respond is the personal comments.:yes:

I was making a point with my comment on growing up hungry as it corresponded to the previous comment that many don't realize how lucky we really, really have it with our system, "warts and all".

I was not "playing that very weak and transparent card", I just don't think like that, I don't consider that fact in my upbringing weak at all.:lol:

---"I've got no problems with large scale agriculture in general - but don't try and pass it off as perfect. No production method is perfect, and none is without drawbacks and problems."---

I guess we do agree in principle, after all, once the little details of who does what and how are not that relevant to this discussion (notice, I didn't say debate, that you assert not to care for).:)

Oldenburg Mom
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:14 AM
All I can think of is "Soylent Green" ... and Charlton Heston, ... "Soylent Green ... is made out of people!" Here's the youtube link of the scene (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MjoPzQUKCU)

Sorry,... just showing my age. :lol:

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:18 AM
You may say this now, but generally you defensively reply to others that they are uninformed, biased, or jumping on the hot topic after reading one book by Michael Pollan or Joel Salatin. Every other industry in this country has to deal with public scrutiny and change accordingly, the agricultural industry is no exception.

We certainly don't stop looking for improvements in the auto industry just because "at least it's better than what we had before (you know, like walking.)"

Again, so we agree in principle.

I have a long record of what I post on these topics and you won't find anywhere I have not said we are not perfect and we are working on doing better all the time, all of us, no matter at what level we play the game of making a living and running our lives.

I do object when so many today only bring what is not good enough to the table and use it to bash for it the whole, here whole industries.

Those myths out there is what I try to comment on and bring the facts to explain that it is not quite as some like to make it sound, that there is more to the story than those media sound bites so many love to repeat, that's all.:yes:

tle
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:24 AM
Need to catch up on Page 5 but heard about this on the radio driving in to work this morning and had to giggle given the comments that some (Bluey) have made about the safety of beef.

http://www.newsinferno.com/archives/18157

E. coli Prompts California Meatpacker to Recall Beef - specifically 864,000 pounds!!

tle
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:36 AM
"Deal with it" like you apparently deal with people not being overly impressed with your drivel against factory farming?

If you are holding yourself up as some sort of vunderfarmer in the "back to natural" movement, you got a ways to go.

WHOA!! Where exactly did JSwan hold herself up like that?? I think you're reading WAY too much into what she's saying and I'm wondering why you're so defensive against people who take issue with the bad that IS in industrial farming?

Bluey... you seem to be calming down a little. YOur initial posts on this (like threads in the past) came off as HIGHLY defensive and downright rude to people who didn't agree with every word you were writing, sticking to your guns that the industrial food system is the savior of the world. The industrial system may have saved us as far as full bellies for almost everyone... but you simply cannot say that it's not done large amounts of harm as well. I think it's that harm that people take exception to (I know I do) and why the "back to the land" movement and such are SO wildly popular. People believe there HAS to be a better way.

I can rattle off half a dozen "harms" of the industrial food system without thinking. Other than not being able to feed the entire world, can you say the same for the agriculture system you are so highly against? Just curious.

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 08:40 AM
Hey - you stole my line! I always use that line on these threads! :lol:

Bluey - I still find your characterizations disengenous, vague and dismissive of legitimate concerns.

I can, and have, gone into great detail about the drawbacks to the small scale diversified model. I have pointed out the fallacies, biosecurity concerns, possible issues with a consistent food supply, educating consumers, including reforming customer expectations. I've also gone into detail about the drawbacks to exemptions in poultry slaughter, (on-site or under state or federal poultry exempt permit requirements). Issues with small plants and costs of operation. I've also relayed information about issues with liability and insurance, food handling, and happily provided links to unbiased information on programs and requirements for different types of production methods. All in an effort to inform, educate and elucidate - and to be open, frank and candid about the subject. Because people do have a right to know.

What I get in return is a dismissive comment from you that "no method is perfect or warts and all".

Could you possibly think of anything more ambiguous?

My comment about your childhood is intended not to be personal - but to remind you that you're not the only person who suffered. My family suffered too - in camps. And the ones that came back, half insane, taught me that going with the flow, and being frightened or bullied into silence - has negative consequences.

If you're threatened by people wanting to know if their food is safe and humanely obtained - I'd say the only way to answer their questions is to be open, frank, honest and open to informed criticism. It's not a bad thing. Because just as small and medium sized direct marketing operations have drawbacks - so does the industrial large scale model. Merely saying "warts and all" isn't going to cut it anymore. Either we address them within the industry to the satisfaction of the public - or we can allow the AR lobby to define and control the argument.


All I can think of is "Soylent Green" ... and Charlton Heston, ... "Soylent Green ... is made out of people!" Here's the youtube link of the scene (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MjoPzQUKCU)

Sorry,... just showing my age. :lol:

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 09:51 AM
---"My comment about your childhood is intended not to be personal - but to remind you that you're not the only person who suffered. My family suffered too - in camps. And the ones that came back, half insane, taught me that going with the flow, and being frightened or bullied into silence - has negative consequences."--

I already explained why I made that comment, don't know why you keep at it.
So, your family had such a hard time, well, my father spent six months in a hospital after he came out of a concentration camp almost dead, not even talking about my mother's terrible history and that means what to this discussion here?:confused:


For that poster so happy that there is a meat recall in CA right now, I will say that there is a vaccine right now for that kind of e-coli in Canada and it is in the approval phase in the USA right now, so that will be taken care of.

Did you read my link, where e-coli is found in the same % in grass fed cattle and in the environment most any place?

There is risk to ALL food we eat:

http://www.agweb.com/get_article.aspx?pageid=152537

E-coli is a known risk and people that handle food can avoid it by handling it properly.
The worst outbreak of e-coli ever was ...in cantaloupes.

I say, those recalls just tell you the system is working, is catching it when there is a problem, if it is e-coli, salmonella or any other.

Put this in perspective, from all that aboundant food out there, very, very few people get sick, sad as it is that ANY get sick.
We are working on it, but we also have come a very long way to make today food and life in general safer than ever.

People used to get considerably sicker and die not so long ago.
To point that we are not perfect, serious as that is to consider, is disingenuous when used to say everything is terrible today.:no:

I can't find the link, but on all we do in our lives in the USA today, the riskiest is driving and I don't see anyone walking to get around or staying home.;)
Eating was way down the list of risky behaviours.:yes:

Seriously, I know all that is good and bad in agriculture, but so much bandied around here is just missing the mark.
For what I know, while repeating that there is plenty to work on yet, I will say we are way ahead with the systems we have in place in this country, yes, WARTS AND ALL, compared with where we come from and how so much of the world still has to live.
That is what I am trying to say.

Just think about this meat in a vat, you can control for any pathogens better than you may in the real world, unless you of course didn't wash your knife and fork well.:eek:
Just don't blame it on the meat or that it was produced in a vat.:p

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:25 AM
---"
So, your family had such a hard time, well,hat means what to this discussion here?:confused:



Well, that's it exactly. I don't bring it up every time - YOU do. Every time a an ag related subject comes up you mention your childhood as if you're the only family that has experienced suffering. News flash - many people have similar stories but don't beat people over the head with them.

And as usual, you're duck, diving, dodging and diving again. Never answering a direct question, never disclosing specifics about the drawbacks or issues in large scale agriculture, just again with the same mantra. As if the reply, "Hey - we have a drug that'll cure that" makes us feel any better.

And as usual, you repeat that anyone who doesn't agree with whatever it is you're trying to convey simply doesn't understand. We're too stupid, read too many Joel Salatin articles, or can't possibly know anything about agriculture unless the information comes directly from an industry article. Here's another news flash - we read many of the same publications. We're part of the same industry.

I'll give you credit - you're good at misdirection, nonresponse and sleight of hand. You think I don't notice it - and that you're playing with people?

And please - don't bother denying it. It's no different than the people who used to bait county on slaughter threads - and it's just as obvious.

So - knock yourself out with whatever it is you're trying to browbeat people into accepting. If I wanted a lecture - I'd call my mother.

wendy
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:26 AM
I can't find the link, but on all we do in our lives in the USA today, the riskiest is driving and I don't see anyone walking to get around or staying home.
Eating was way down the list of risky behaviours
well, actually, if you look at the major causes of death and morbidity in the US today- heart disease, stroke, type II diabetes, cancer- and consider the causes of these diseases- one would have to conclude that eating is the riskiest thing we do. Our current food supply system produces large quantities of unhealthy, non-nutritious foods; too many calories for all, not enough healthy nutrients for anyone.

RacetrackReject
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:30 AM
While the majority of this thread has made me want to stick a fork in my eye, I think some valid points were raised on both sides.

I will say that for me, personally, I cannot eat commercially grown beef. It makes me sick. For quite a while I stopped eating red meat altogether, but then tried some organic meat and did not get sick. Tried commercial meat again and was sick. As long as I buy the meat from the organic butcher shop an hour away, I can eat it just fine. The same thing goes for eggs. I love eggs, but every few times I ate eggs purchased at the store, I would get sick (they were labeled cage-free but not organic). I now have my own free range chickens and eat their eggs. I haven't been sick from eggs since. I know it's not fact or proof of anything, but it is my personal experience.

I live in Texas as well Bluey and grew up in the middle of cattle ranches. I have never heard anyone speak about corn finished being better than grass or vice versa. I know I serve steaks to my guests quite alot and no one has ever commented that they tasted differently, only that they were less fatty (in a good way!). The general public just sees it as food and doesn't really care one way or the other where it came from.

No real point to my post I guess, just some random thoughts..lol.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:33 AM
well, actually, if you look at the major causes of death and morbidity in the US today- heart disease, stroke, type II diabetes, cancer- and consider the causes of these diseases- one would have to conclude that eating is the riskiest thing we do. Our current food supply system produces large quantities of unhealthy, non-nutritious foods; too many calories for all, not enough healthy nutrients for anyone.

I have answered that before. Perspective, remember?

-First, people die of many things and the longer we live, the more of all kinds of things will kill us.
We live longer for many reasons, one that we have enough and varied food to eat, we don't go thru starving famines or malnutrition, at least not most in the developed world.

-Second, there is way more to those diseases than food, like lifestyle and other factors in our environment.

-Third, do I have to repeat this one also, that we are lucky to have a choice and that some may make the wrong choices is up to the individuals?

I don't want to offend some that don't think we should talk about how we grew up, but I have a bad heart.
What do you think when you read that, there she goes, heart disease from eating the "wrong" foods, I knew it!
Well, no, I was born right after WWII and my parents had a hard time in the war, as so many did and I was born with some defects, directly related to those conditions, one of them ...a heart defect.

I use that story as an example of ASSUMING when hearing about any one disease it was caused by whatever buzzword of the moment we may be thinking.

In summary, no, food in itself doesn't cause disease, how we handle, use and/or abuse or don't have access to food may cause some diseases.

I am in the camp that we should be glad for the food we have and work on making it the best we can, knowing it will never be perfect.:)

S1969
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:57 AM
In summary, no, food in itself doesn't cause disease, how we handle, use and/or abuse or don't have access to food may cause some diseases.

I am in the camp that we should be glad for the food we have and work on making it the best we can, knowing it will never be perfect.:)

Food doesn't cause disease, or at least most foods probably don't. What is available to *most* people that live in this country [I hesitate to call some of it "food"], especially those that are poor, does absolutely contribute greatly to obesity and poor health. Anyone who doesn't believe this is kidding themselves.

What is sold in grocery stores, fed in schools, and available in 95% of restaurants is what is marketed to consumers by food manufacturers for the sole purpose of making a profit. Food that is processed, high in HFCS and fat, and low in nutrition is cheap to produce.

Of course a consumer CAN make a healthy meal from what is offered at the grocery store, but it is not what is marketed to them -- bombarded to them on the radio, tv, print ads, even in school. I don't think it's fair at all to say that it's simply "the wrong choices" made by consumers that results in obesity and associated health problems.

tle
Jan. 19, 2010, 10:58 AM
I use that story as an example of ASSUMING when hearing about any one disease it was caused by whatever buzzword of the moment we may be thinking.

Honestly, the only one who would assume that is you. I would never assume anything like that about someone I didn't know personally, so stop painting the rest of the world as viscious and you as the victim.


In summary, no, food in itself doesn't cause disease, how we handle, use and/or abuse or don't have access to food may cause some diseases.

I do not believe this. There is more and more evidence appearing every day to related WHAT foods we eat (and how they are prepared/processed) to various diseases. Food does and can cause disease all by itself if it's the WRONG food! Talk to anyone who has successfully changed their diets (and diet change ALONE) to deal with autism spectrum disorders, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, rheumatoid arthritis, anxiety disorder, high blood pressure, obesity, thyroid disorders like Hashimoto's, and a myriad of others. FOOD can and does CAUSE These thing and food can and does correct them (at least to a certain extent).


I am in the camp that we should be glad for the food we have and work on making it the best we can, knowing it will never be perfect.:)

No one here has said they aren't grateful for the food that we have available to us in this country. However, your definition of "making it the best we can" and mine are 2 totally different things. You see teh status quo - big agribusiness, monoculture crops, increased vaccinations and other drug use, as ok... as the savior of our lives. I beg to differ. Would we need vaccinations if the conditions to spread such diseases weren't "built in" to our industrial food supply? That's just one question that I ask to be answered.

Oh and for the record... my giggle at this morning's report was not happiness at the beef recall. But rather at the timing of such -- in the middle of this debate. please don't assume the worst of me (again) and make me out to be a monster. i don't appreciate it.

It did bring up another point on the industrial system. Had the outbreak happened at a more local plant with local beef only... I would imagine the number of pounds recalled (and thus the number of lives endangered) would ahve been GREATLY reduced. that's one for the local system over the mega-monster system.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 11:07 AM
While the majority of this thread has made me want to stick a fork in my eye, I think some valid points were raised on both sides.

I will say that for me, personally, I cannot eat commercially grown beef. It makes me sick. For quite a while I stopped eating red meat altogether, but then tried some organic meat and did not get sick. Tried commercial meat again and was sick. As long as I buy the meat from the organic butcher shop an hour away, I can eat it just fine. The same thing goes for eggs. I love eggs, but every few times I ate eggs purchased at the store, I would get sick (they were labeled cage-free but not organic). I now have my own free range chickens and eat their eggs. I haven't been sick from eggs since. I know it's not fact or proof of anything, but it is my personal experience.

I live in Texas as well Bluey and grew up in the middle of cattle ranches. I have never heard anyone speak about corn finished being better than grass or vice versa. I know I serve steaks to my guests quite alot and no one has ever commented that they tasted differently, only that they were less fatty (in a good way!). The general public just sees it as food and doesn't really care one way or the other where it came from.

No real point to my post I guess, just some random thoughts..lol.

You have not heard about the difference because no one talks about it, it is such a known fact.
Are you sure you are really talking about cattle off grass, not given some grain to finish them out, on grass pastures, as so many do today for those special market niches?

Now, butchering a calf still on it's mother, not weaned yet, that is good for steaks also, but falls into veal and yes, that is good also.
If you are not talking grilled steaks, then yes, you can make any kind of meat good by cooking it properly, for whatever kind it is.

Talking about the yearlings off grass, sorry, everyone I know or when it has ever come in the conversation with the old timers that had to eat those, they will tell you it was not the best eating experience, many said they could have used those steaks for resoling their boots.;)
On the chuckwagon, if they had those to eat from, the cook would cut them very thin, pound it to death to tenderize it and "chicken fry" it, not just grill it as they would veal or we do grain fed today.

Even JSwan said that her own mother told her it was not as good as conventional grain fed, there is no disputing that, according to way too many taste tests over many years now.

Sorry, I have yet to see truly grass only finished cattle be other than not at all close to grain finshed in important eating qualities.
That is like saying our blue marble floating around in space is flat.

wendy
Jan. 19, 2010, 11:21 AM
Third, do I have to repeat this one also, that we are lucky to have a choice and that some may make the wrong choices is up to the individuals?



do we have a choice? I'd look it up again but don't feel like it. For example, a nutritional analysis of eggs. Commercial eggs compared to eggs from free-range free-feeding chickens. The commercial eggs were remarkably devoid of nutrients in comparison to the free-range bug- and weed-fed eggs. What percentage of our society has access to nutritious eggs?
Seems to me our agricultural system is set up to mass-produce cheap foods with little nutritional value.
Most people in our society are suffering and dying from conditions ultimately caused by malnutrition. Malnutrition doesn't just mean "starving"; it also means "not enough of this, too much of that".

S1969
Jan. 19, 2010, 11:33 AM
Sorry, I have yet to see truly grass only finished cattle be other than not at all close to grain finshed in important eating qualities.
That is like saying our blue marble floating around in space is flat.

Maybe the grass out in Texas is not that good?

I have eaten and served to unknowing guests many "100% grass-fed" steaks that were fabulous with no prep at all. We have had guests comment that they were surprised "grass-fed" beef would be so good, and even my own father [a true corn-fed beef steak lover] claims that the best steak he has ever had was from 100% grass-fed cattle raised by a family member in northern NY.

Maybe the grass is just greener here in NY.

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 12:06 PM
Even JSwan said that her own mother told her it was not as good as conventional grain fed, there is no disputing that, according to way too many taste tests over many years now.


Really? You know my mother? That's odd because I know her pretty well and she's never said anything of the sort. And she's lectured me for over 40 years in 3 different languages. From subjects ranging from my grades to my career to my cooking to my choice of husband. So - it's not enough to tell me what I should think you have to tell everyone what my mother thinks, too?

And your continued assertion that it doesn't taste as good as grain fed is purely subjective. That is not an immutable Truth, or one of Newton's Laws. You are simply repeating the findings of a taste tests sponsored by the beef industry. And since few people know any other product except that which is provided in the store, it is natural they would prefer it to something they're not familiar with. That does not mean that a different choice is inferior, unsafe, illegal or unethical to produce and market.

It's like saying that everyone has to drink Coke because the Coke people found that people like Coke more than Pepsi. Therefore - Pepsi should be taken off the market because people who drink Pepsi are too stupid to know they should be drinking Coke. And the Pepsi people - well - they're not quite right and don't know how to make a proper soda because if they did, they'd be making Coke.

Come on, Bluey - now you're just plain getting ridiculous. :lol:

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 03:40 PM
---"Really? You know my mother? That's odd because I know her pretty well and she's never said anything of the sort. "---

You posted that on another of these debates, when the taste question came up, that at that time you did say "it took special skills cooking grass fed because it was drier meat and that your mother was one that didn't prefer it to grain fed".

Yes, I am surprised that now you are insisting it is not so.:confused:

The reason we even have grain fed beef in such aboundance today is because, before there were feedlots, some farmers would feed their extra grain to fatten some of their cattle and that was the most sought after, special meat of that time, around the turn of the 20's century and in the first few decades.

That was so expensive and rare, unless you were one of those farmers, that it was a special treat to get some of that meat.

Because of that success, some enterprising farmer figured how to feed more and more of those steers grain and the feedlot industry was born.

I am sure that, if people now decide they like a different kind of meat, the industry will change to provide that.

I think that for most people that just want food, meat in a vat, if it can have advantages of price, convenience or whatever the marketers can convince people to like, that will also be a viable alternative to the real thing.

I wonder how vegetarians will then feel about meat, if coming from a vat will be acceptable, as the needed supplements they buy, coming for laboratories, are today?:)

cloudyandcallie
Jan. 19, 2010, 03:44 PM
I'm waiting for scientists to grown brain cells for implantation into some of these people.:lol:
Then I'll be impressed.

tle
Jan. 19, 2010, 03:55 PM
I'm waiting for scientists to grown brain cells for implantation into some of these people.:lol:
Then I'll be impressed.

Hmmm... and which people would that be?

Honestly, that's a pretty rude statement even if you directed it at "some of these people".

tle
Jan. 19, 2010, 03:57 PM
I think that for most people that just want food, meat in a vat, if it can have advantages of price, convenience or whatever the marketers can convince people to like, that will also be a viable alternative to the real thing.

This would then perpetuate some of the issues that we're starting to see with "cheap food"... that being the cause of digestive imbalances that lead to health problems and disease. Cheap doesn't = better any more than expensive does.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 04:10 PM
This would then perpetuate some of the issues that we're starting to see with "cheap food"... that being the cause of digestive imbalances that lead to health problems and disease. Cheap doesn't = better any more than expensive does.

There is so much more to food than those concerns, valid as they are.

People are omnivorous and very resilient.
We have evolved to use so much in most any food we eat.
We have evolved to depend on some nutrients that we need in certain quantities, but other than that, we do fine with a very large variety of food sources.

What we have to realize is that, if the figures projected come true, the earth will have doubled it's human population by 2050 and someone will have to feed all, somehow.

There are some interesting articles about this lately and people like Bill Gates and his billions behind research towar's those goals and some of those involve all this we have been discussing here.

For those interested in more about this:

http://deltafarmpress.com/news/laws-column-0821/

http://wsu.academia.edu/documents/0046/7264/2009_Cornell_Nutrition_Conference_Capper_et_al.pdf

S1969
Jan. 19, 2010, 04:17 PM
I am sure that, if people now decide they like a different kind of meat, the industry will change to provide that.

I'm not so sure. The food production/manufacturing industry weilds great power over consumers. There is no way to "choose" grass-fed beef unless you don't shop in grocery stores, which is extremely difficult even if you are highly motivated. The USDA and other food handling regulations required for small producers can be prohibitively expensive and can make it impossible for them to compete with the Tysons and IBPs of the market. Even if smaller producers can produce competitive products, they have to get the Wal-Marts and Price Chopper regional offices to offer their products, individual stores may have no say in the matter.

It's not an issue of consumers and farmers/producers and free market economics. It's the massive infrastructure built into the food industry by all those organizations in the middle (the ones that make all the money, by the way, not the farmers).

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 04:22 PM
-

You posted that on another of these debates, when the taste question came up, that at that time you did say "it took special skills cooking grass fed because it was drier meat and that your mother was one that didn't prefer it to grain fed".

Yes, I am surprised that now you are insisting it is not so.:confused:


Probably because I've never said that. I said my mother is a bad cook and that everything tasted like shoe leather. Even the horsemeat I ate as a kid. Maybe burned fat gave it something resembling taste but if the smoke alarm is your dinner bell..... dinner isn't your favorite meal. There it is. Sorry, mom. I am the one who cooks grass-fed beef and I've got zero trouble making excellent dishes. I also cook grain-fed beef. I'm no zealot, but I'm a better cook than my mother. Marginally.

But hey - if you want to continue to keep putting my words in my mouth go right ahead - it's pretty funny. In fact - go round and round is almost amusing - in a sad way.

And ahem - I'm STILL waiting for you to be as candid, frank, and open about the issues with large scale agriculture - just as I have been with the small/medium farm model. I note you're still dodging all questions and refusing to discuss issues such as animal welfare. More misdirection..... and a missed opportunity to be frank and candid.

crickets chirping.......

sigh - honestly bluey I know you're smarter than to keep repeating the messages that the big guys keep putting out. I get the same messages, but I know they're not the gospel truth.

There are small and medium sized farmers that are happy to be able to direct market their products to local consumers - happy not to have to ship their animals off. And pretty darn thrilled that they can farm full time and be in the black. No gov't subsidies. Less concern about fluctuations in fuel prices. Fewer concerns about herd health because they have closed herds. Transport to slaughter is minutes. Not hours or days. Some producers are bringing back breeds that were never bred to finish on grain - like Devon.

I just think it's terribly odd that you would continue to assert that organic food is inferior. It's not. The producer just doesn't use pesticides.
If the consumer wants to avoid pesticides and a farmer can produce food without them - who are you or anyone else to say that is a bad thing?

Laws and regulations, by the way, that are often used to drive him out of business or nudge him out of market share.

I don't much have an opinion on organic food becaue I don't eat it. But organic production is just one type of production that is viable, ethical, and legal. Why ridicule it? Why call it unethical or deceptive advertising? Why ridicule those who finish their cattle on grass? How do you know anything about finishing animals that way - you don't do it. It's a method - not just taking a scrawy steer and marketing is as "grass-fed".

Again - I don't have a heck of a lot of problems with large scale agriculture - but I'm just curious as to why you're happy to ridicule those who produce food in a manner you're not familiar with - but refuse to answer any questions about methods some find.... troubling.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 04:44 PM
Probably because I've never said that. I said my mother is a bad cook and that everything tasted like shoe leather. Even the horsemeat I ate as a kid. Maybe burned fat gave it something resembling taste but if the smoke alarm is your dinner bell..... dinner isn't your favorite meal. There it is. Sorry, mom.

But hey - if you want to continue to keep putting my words in my mouth go right ahead - it's pretty funny. In fact - go round and round is almost amusing - in a sad way.

And ahem - I'm STILL waiting for you to be as candid, frank, and open about the issues with large scale agriculture - just as I have been with the small/medium farm model. I note you're still dodging all questions and refusing to discuss issues such as animal welfare. More misdirection..... and a missed opportunity to be frank and candid.

crickets chirping.......

sigh - honestly bluey I know you're smarter than to keep repeating the messages that the big guys keep putting out. I get the same messages, but I know they're not the gospel truth.

There are small and medium sized farmers that are happy to be able to direct market their products to local consumers - happy not to have to ship their animals off. And pretty darn thrilled that they can farm full time and be in the black. No gov't subsidies. Less concern about fluctuations in fuel prices. Fewer concerns about herd health because they have closed herds. Transport to slaughter is minutes. Not hours or days. Some producers are bringing back breeds that were never bred to finish on grain - like Devon.

I just think it's terribly odd that you would continue to assert that organic food is inferior. It's not. The producer just doesn't use pesticides.
If the consumer wants to avoid pesticides and a farmer can produce food without them - who are you or anyone else to say that is a bad thing?

Laws and regulations, by the way, that are often used to drive him out of business or nudge him out of market share.

I don't much have an opinion on organic food becaue I don't eat it. But organic production is just one type of production that is viable, ethical, and legal. Why ridicule it? Why call it unethical or deceptive advertising? Why ridicule those who finish their cattle on grass? How do you know anything about finishing animals that way - you don't do it. It's a method - not just taking a scrawy steer and marketing is as "grass-fed".

Again - I don't have a heck of a lot of problems with large scale agriculture - but I'm just curious as to why you're happy to ridicule those who produce food in a manner you're not familiar with - but refuse to answer any questions about methods some find.... troubling.



Oh, my, it is you who keeps putting words in my mouth.

First, I am not defending any one kind of agriculture in particular, just explaining the facts of what is discussed and I know is not as some think it is.
That is not defending, it is bringing facts to the table, not weighing them for other purposes.

These issues are so much larger than the little we are touching on here, as I try to show thru the links I am providing.

There is plenty that is fine with all kinds of agriculture, but to say what is good in particular in the SMALL niche agriculture as truly "grass fed" beef is, as the question came up here, that I leave for others to answer.

I think that all of you that espouse truly grass fed beef are falling asleep on the job, as I could just as well give many, many more real, factual reasons some of that beef is maybe better.:D
Since to those it also not only has to be better, but grain fed "bad", I won't help that side.
Sorry, if you want to know, learn about it, I am not going to give ammunition to those that think that true grass fed beef is the best way, when there is NO best way, because it is comparing apples to bananas.

All methods of production have been established as they are because they are the most efficient for that particular producer and market.

I think these topics are more serious than many here are even aware off, our own cultures and societies may be at stake here in how we proceed and it will be in more important ways for our survival then if we may get too fat or get purple polka dots from eating any one way.

JSwan
Jan. 19, 2010, 04:47 PM
Oh wonderful.

Another condescending nonanswer.

Bluey
Jan. 19, 2010, 05:35 PM
Oh wonderful.

Another condescending nonanswer.

Oh, wonderful, another non-answer.;)

Daydream Believer
Jan. 19, 2010, 05:53 PM
Oh wonderful.

Another condescending nonanswer.

You will be much happier with Bluey on Ignore...trust me. ;)

Druid Acres
Jan. 21, 2010, 12:32 PM
Anyone read Oryx and Crake? Margaret Atwood?

Caitlin

Yup. One of the scariest books I've ever read!