Originally Posted by jtphillips
Glen, you have an obvious bias towards this conversation: thirty years in the animal protein production business. You said, and I quote, "In short - never in the History of Man have we in the US had such a high quality, healthy, abundant, wholesome, nutritious and low-cost RAW or whole food supply. Those that tell you otherwise are either misinformed or trying to sell you something natural or organic at 3x the price." You are telling me that a cow that stands in it's own defication for the duration of its existence and never feeds on grass is healthy? The majority of the beef in our society comes from cattle that do just that; these cattle are raised in CAFO's (concentrated animal feeding operations). Cattle aren't biological designed to eat grain, yet that is all their diet consists of in a CAFO. Ninety percent of E. Coli that cattle carry could be destroyed by feeding them grass for only one week---the beef producers refuse to do this. The majority of the chicken in our society is shot full of antibiotics and growth hormones to make them grow bigger and faster. Tyson has essentially re-engineered the the chicken to have larger breasts and grow much faster. Many of the chickens can only take two or three steps and have to plop down because their body mass increases quicker than their bone structure. The production of our protein is controlled by Capitalism and the drive to always produce more meat quicker. The techniques the major meat producers use to grow their animals are inhumane and disgusting. You may be right, we have an abundace of meat in our society, but only because we live in a Capitalistic society that wants to producre more and more at a faster rate. All the while, no one steps back to ask if it is ethical to raise animals like this. Just for the record, I am neither mis-informed, nor am I trying to sell organic meat. Also, I don't have the inherent bias of thirty years in the meat business. I suggest you get your facts straight. I don't blame the meat producers for trying to make as much profit as possible, but they can't loose their virtue along the way. In your post you said that PTsidehow needed to get his facts straight. In order for anyone to "get their facts straight" they need to be truely objective. How objective can you be when you have worked in protein production for thirty years?
I'm not sure where you are getting your info, but you make several assertions here that are not true or at least not completely true.
1. Grass doesn't kill E.coli. Grass is a plant and is primarily water and cellulose. There are a number of species of bacteria that can digest cellulose. E.coli just digests grains "better" than grass. E.coli is the species of bacteria that is prevalent because the beef is primarily fed grain in this country, if beef were fed primarily grass, then there'd be a different bacteria that was prevalent.
2. Cows ARE biologically suited to eat grain...cows are herbivorous and grains are plants. As huge herds of cow ancestors migrated through the plans feasting on wild plants, there certainly was a great deal of grain among those plants.
3. I think you're missing a basic point about why these things are done. The "beef people" raise their cows in feed lots because consumers love beef but don't want to pay a premium for it and there's an ever-increasing base of customers. If the populous was willing/able to pay 2 or 3 times the price and demanded all beef be fed primarily grass, then it would happen. But when Wal-mart controls the prices for all things food and demands the producers do everything on the cheap to keep prices down, you get feed lots.
As for the chickens...everybody wants lean chicken (aka breasts). How can you fault Tyson or anyone else for giving the market what the market demands. Is it fair to treat animals "inhumanely" to give the people exactly what they want? I obviously don't have a huge problem with it.
4. None of the things that you've mentioned are unhealthy to you or me.