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Visited Slaughterhouse in Nebraska - Page 5

post #61 of 74
a guided tour under ideal conditions still shows that a big slaughterhouse can be clean and humane. the bad apples always get the attention. on the other hand, i agree with those who say the raising and feeding of cattle is the larger problem. we feed cows corn because it's cheaper, not for the flavor (though fat does taste good). it's so you can raise more cows on less land, which combine to produce higher methane emissions, diseases, toxic runoff, and meat filled with undesirable chemicals. another good reason to change the way we produce beef (as well as corn and other grains) is to save our prairies. most feedlots are located in the great plains, and grasslands need to be grazed on. there aren't enough buffalo, but we have plenty of cattle...
post #62 of 74
Americans today spend a record low percentage of their income on food. 9.5% compared with upwards of 23% in the 1930s. Modern agricultural techniques are certainly the cause of this, but of course I wonder what the percentage would be without all the externalities. http://www.ers.usda.gov/briefing/cpi...les/table7.htm
post #63 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by iammatt View Post
I find myself in an odd position in these topics, and for most other environment topics. As I mentioned in the forgotten filet thread, I probably eat beef once a month, maybe twice, and anything other than grass fed beef maybe twice a year if a client or friend feels the need to go to a steak house. I pretty much stick to fish, shellfish, duck, pork, rabbit and pigeon, with a little lamb mixed in. The fish market I use is really into sustainable fishing, so while I don't think about it much, I guess my fish consumption is pretty good. I eat a lot of vegetables, etc. That is just how I learned to eat, and how I feel comfortable eating. I have no interest at all in forcing others to eat that way, so I end up feeling the need to argue for the goodness, or whatever, of things I don't really like, and never search out. Likewise, I don't care how much people drive, but I turned my last car in after 4 years and 12k miles. Not saying that I am great, but that the issue is one of motivations, and I don't think many people are motivated by belligerent assholes like Michael Pollan, or by guilt tripping them about the sad cows or how cow farts are bad for the environment. I think it's great that you showed somebody how to shop, and that kind of stuff will improve things if done with kindness as in your example, but people also like McDonalds etc, and I don't think that anything will stop that, and I think marginalizing people for eating that way is both silly and cruel, and shows a lack of understanding for the multiple motivations at work.

No I don't think that marginalizing people will do anything to change it. I also think that McDonalds will always be a problem for Americans. I do consume beef more often than you, though not much more often. I mean privately, among friends, yes I do make fun of people for eating shitty food when it is not necessary. Would I do so in a documentary or in the context of a serious argument? No, of course not, just as no one here would seriously advocate any sort of sartorial fascism that punishes people for black suits or notched lapels. But, we like to have our fun, and it's important when we argue about these things to separate those two realms of thought.
post #64 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post
No I don't think that marginalizing people will do anything to change it. I also think that McDonalds will always be a problem for Americans. I do consume beef more often than you, though not much more often. I mean privately, among friends, yes I do make fun of people for eating shitty food when it is not necessary. Would I do so in a documentary or in the context of a serious argument? No, of course not, just as no one here would seriously advocate any sort of sartorial fascism that punishes people for black suits or notched lapels. But, we like to have our fun, and it's important when we argue about these things to separate those two realms of thought.
I like to make fun of people who buy expensive meat and vegetables, make them taste like shit and then proclaim how wonderful it all is and that it is all about being seasonal, and all about the ingredients. Of course, I live in a target rich environment. About McDs, I don't know if it is a problem if it is in moderation, do you think it is? I haven't been there in like 15 years. And yes, I do think it is good to talk about it on many levels, as long as we do allow for the realities of the world.
post #65 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by iammatt View Post
I like to make fun of people who buy expensive meat and vegetables, make them taste like shit and then proclaim how wonderful it all is and that it is all about being seasonal, and all about the ingredients. Of course, I live in a target rich environment. About McDs, I don't know if it is a problem if it is in moderation, do you think it is? I haven't been there in like 15 years. And yes, I do think it is good to talk about it on many levels, as long as we do allow for the realities of the world.

Well I've never been the type to be a seasonal nazi. But yes I do think that McDs is a problem. Not because there is a clear lack of moderation, but because its popularity demonstrates a lack of understanding and appreciation for food. I have a few diners I love to go to that cost about the same as McDonalds that make me an extremely unhealthy patty melt or hamburger. I use it in moderation, and the big difference to me is, it's a family run business that does what it does well.

McDonald's food tastes like absolute garbage, is made of garbage, and I frankly can't think of anything nice to say about the company save for the fact that they provide jobs and give a lot to charity. I think the product is horrible. Obviously I wouldn't be in favor of legislation against them in that regard, but I would be in favor of an uptick in food savvy in this country to the point that McDonalds would suffer as a result of people preparing their own hamburgers or going to mom and pop specialty diners/restos instead.
post #66 of 74
Really? I like McDonalds, and many other fast food chains.

I haven't been in ages, but there was a relatively brief period in grad school when I went to McDonalds every 2-3 weeks. I'd order and finish 3 double cheeseburgers, 2 chicken whatevers, 2 medium fries, and a thing of apple pies. It was awesome.
post #67 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaxixi View Post
Really? I like McDonalds, and many other fast food chains.

I haven't been in ages, but there was a relatively brief period in grad school when I went to McDonalds every 2-3 weeks. I'd order and finish 3 double cheeseburgers, 2 chicken whatevers, 2 medium fries, and a thing of apple pies. It was awesome.

Hopefully you had the genetics to keep you from getting fat.

I personally don't understand McDs... but that doesn't mean I don't like junk food. As I said, I absolutely love a great diner.
post #68 of 74
I am reading MP's book to educate myself and to get a different perspective on where my food comes from, how and what goes in to raising/growing them and why we are what we are today because of what we put into our bellies. I have no intention to force anyone to eat anything. I eat at McDs, BK too, but I will support local whenever I can. Whole Foods, on the other hand, is another story altogether.
post #69 of 74
Yeah, pretty lucky so far. Have to work to keep weight on.
post #70 of 74
I've been comparing U.S. corn vs grass beef lately, and have come to the conclusion that I like both The corn and grass are separate sources, but about equal quality (Prime, Aged, local, etc.). I think corn has the edge for cuts like rib eye, and grass is better for fillet.

The best beef in Japan seems to be treated better than most humans though, as they are fed well, massaged, and even drink beer. As a consequence, the price is outrageous compared to even the best U.S. Prime.
post #71 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by ben39 View Post
I mean local as in where I live. The only meat you buy in supermarkets here is flown from the other side of the country from factory farms like you described. I must admit it is impressive the sheer amount of volume these places pump out but i don't want to eat meat from animals which are more or less sick. I buy beef which has an address and is raised in the traditional way - on grass. It tastes better and is better for you and the environment.

I've seen Food Inc. and while I thought it was an okay documentary there were a few things I disagree with (industrial organic food). I always recommend the books of Michael Pollan for anybody interested in where their food comes from.
(my bolding)

What makes you think it is better for the environment? I can assure you it is not. If the same about of beef was produced the way you prefer, it would demand dramatically more inputs.
post #72 of 74
It's not even a fair comparison between corn and grass. For one, the corn industry is HEAVILY subsidized by the Gov't. Some just think it's cheaper due to not seeing the whole cost up front. Second, there's the environmental toll due to growing and harvesting the corn using diesel tractors, then shipping it from lord knows how far away.

Personally, I look to eat meat from other sources besides beef, b/c it takes way more resources such as food and water to raise beef as opposed to other animals such as chicken.

From a Cornell Univ. Study by Roger Segelken (Cornell Sutdy

Our taste for meat is costly in terms of water, Pimentel noted. Producing a pound of animal protein requires, on average, about 100 times more water than producing a pound of vegetable protein. But some animals are thriftier, he noted: Whereas growing the grain to feed cattle requires 12,000 gallons of water for every pound of beef, chicken can be produced for "only" 420 gallons of water per pound of meat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by archetypal_yuppie View Post
(my bolding)

What makes you think it is better for the environment? I can assure you it is not. If the same about of beef was produced the way you prefer, it would demand dramatically more inputs.
post #73 of 74
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SField View Post

As far as that little discussion we had months ago about filet mignon, that's completely forgotten and I didn't even think about that until you brought it up. I wasn't beefing with this guy at all, I was simply bringing up the fact that a clean slaughterhouse doesn't really address the problem that many white rich people have with the beef industry.

I agree. I remember that thread but forgot who else was in it. I certainly didn't take your argument as a continuation of that thread and didn't even realize it was you until it was brought up here. No sweat and this conversation has been good.

I make substantially more than 45k and my wife makes more than I. Still, shopping at a WF is going to double my grocery bill and, with 3 kids, I can't take that hit. I have my kid's college to help pay for, their eventual weddings to take care of (3 daughters) and fund my retirement. As a chef, I can assure you that I eat well and I'm a healthy bastard for a 46 year old. I'm not suggesting you're even making this argument, but I get a little bothered when other people suggest that if you aren't eating local, humane, sustainable foods that you're cheating yourself and your kids or that you're not properly educated. I eat good foods, pretty clean stuff and stay away from processed as much as possible....but I ain't paying $4.99 a pound for ground beef.
post #74 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grayland View Post
Unfortunately, many people can't afford avoiding those foods. As I mentioned before, my wife and I make a damn good living. We're not high rollers, but we do quite well. We can't afford to eat 100% local, artisan raised fod products and I know very few people who can. I agree with you in principle, but reality is different.

I understand that - that's why I said I have the luxury.

But somethings I want to point out that I think truly are not factored in: a lot of people lack education about these kinds of food - they simply don't know, a lot of people especially in poor neighborhoods are served by vendors that only have low nutrient foods available, and the massive amount of subsidization can't just be neglected. I'll leave it at that because I don't think I'll be able to quantitatively prove my point, only to make my objections. That's all.
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