Ok, so I have to admit.
I never knew there was a certain way to feed a cow.
Really, I didn't.
Never thought about it.
Never heard of grass fed beef.
But then....I was..
on what grain does to a cow's digestive system.
Here are some facts you might not have known either.
It will change the way you look at beef.
You most likely will never be able to buy "regular" beef again.
A little history first.....
The evolution of a corn-fed cattle industry
Several decades ago, the cattle industry began feeding cattle a diet based on grain, particularly corn. During World War II, farmers were producing more grain than the American population could consume, so they started feeding the surplus to cattle. They found that a grain-fed diet allowed them to fatten up cows faster for slaughter. Seventy-five years ago, it took a cow 4 or 5 years to reach a weight of 1,200 pounds. Today, says John Robbins, author of author ofThe Food Revolution: How Your Diet Can Help Save Your Life and Our World,cattle can be slaughtered at just 14-16 months of age, thanks to massive amounts of corn, protein supplements, antibiotics, and growth hormones,
Switching cows from grass to grain puts more money in the beef industry’s pockets and cheaper meat on the supermarket shelves. But at what price? The stomachs of cows are naturally pH neutral. A corn-based diet, however, creates an acidic environment that contributes to a host of health problems. Corn-fed cattle are prone to serious health conditions such as bloat, diarrhea, ulcers, liver disease, and a weakened immune system. To combat these health problems, cattle are continually fed antibiotics, which leads to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria that increasingly render modern medicine ineffective.
However, under current law, pigs, chickens, and turkeys that have been fed rendered cattle can be rendered and fed back to cattle—a loophole that may allow mad cow agents to infect healthy cattle. Other legally permitted ingredients include rendered road kill, dead horse, euthanized dogs and cats, animal waste, antibiotics, byproducts of drug manufacture, arsenicals, copper compounds, urea, ammonium chloride and ammonium sulfate, enzymes, preservatives, nutraceuticals, and plastics.
Take home message....they are fed
3. Factory-raised animals are given antibiotics and growth hormones.
“an estimated 70 percent of all the antibiotics used in the U.S. are now being given to healthy animals to improve their growth and performance.”? Moreover, cattle CAFO operators use growth hormones or steroids to help the animals gain the maximum amount of weight on the least amount of time; in fact, nine out of 10 U.S. calves are given growth hormones, including estrogens, progesterone, testosterone and others.
Take home message.....these antibiotics and hormones are going right into your body when you eat this meat. (Antibiotics are made of what? Fungus...in case you forgot.)
A study by Cornell University determined that
E. coli 0157:H7, a strain first isolated in the 1980s, is now found in the intestines of most U. S. feedlot cattle. In the U.S., this bacteria is estimated to cause infection in more than 70,000 people a year. In October of 2007, it sparked the second largest food recall in the history of the U.S., when nearly 22 million pounds of frozen beef patties were recalled due to E. coli concerns. Other bacteria are also causing alarm. In a 2003 study of food-borne pathogens, Australian researchers found that campylobacter – a bacteria that can cause nausea, vomiting fever, headache, muscle pain and potentially serious long-term effects — is carried by 58 percent of cattle raised in feed lots versus only 2 percent of cattle raised and finished in pastures.
Take home message.....grain fed cows get sick. This is passed along to you, the consumer.
5. Corn is a grain.
However.... Corn has been universally contaminated with a fungus that can not be killed.
Take home message....eat regular beef....eat corn....put fungus and mycotoxins in your body.
6. The label must say "100% Grass fed beef".
Take home message....the label must say 100% grass
You can find it at Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and Earth Fare.