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Monday, April 11, 2011

EXTRA EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT!


Finding a good journalist seems to me like finding a diamond in the rough. Good journalists have the ability to cause quite a stir. They generate readership and excite online commenting. They make waves. It's in their job description to write things that many wouldn't dare put to print. It's an art and one that I can appreciate. What I really don't agree with is opinionated writing based on biased, sometimes blatantly incorrect information that above all else comes at the expense of how people make a living.

I hate to increase journalist, Mark Bittman's readership, but here is the article that got me going:

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/15/some-animals-are-more-equal-than-others/

I wouldn't argue with Mr. Bittman if he showed up on campus today. I wouldn't waste my time trying to correct the misinformation he obviously has come to believe about animal agriculture. I believe that people, like Mr. Bittman, are not the norm. They are the 2% who we are not going to convince differently.

I would like to address those who have questions about what Mr. Bittman wrote about in his article. Humane treatment of animals used for food is the industry NORM! Don't lump everyone into the category of people who abuse animals. Unfortunately those people exist, but they are not supported and if found guilty, they are prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Bottomline -- Animal agriculturists care about their animals and animal welfare standards are put in place for a reason. Producers keep up with welfare standards and training by taking courses such as those offered by the Beef Cattle Institute at KSU on: http://www.animalcaretraining.org/. Agriculture is getting better at telling our story, but we have to keep doing so for the consumers who drive our livelihoods!

Lucky for us, we get the chance to vote with our wallets every time we are at the grocery store. I vote every week when I am lucky enough to pick up my meat products that are high in quality, produced humanely and better yet affordable on a college budget!

Please feel free to leave your thoughts.

1 comment:

  1. This seems like a dangerous attitude. You first say that you wouldn't meet him if he were to show up on campus, then you say that you need to communicate better. Think about it, how are you going to communicate better if you won't talk to the press?

    Run down any farm road in any midwestern state. How many pigs, cows and chickens do you see and smell? Mostly likely, you will see very few. But if you happen to come across a factory farm, you probably can't actually keep running; they really do smell that bad. I used to run past dozens of hog farms on 10 mile runs in Iowa. They are all just gone.

    Last year, salmonella sickened 2000 and DeCoster recalled over a half billion eggs. As an exercise, estimate the size of a warehouse needed to hold a half billion eggs. This has nothing to do with family farms.

    The 'pink slime' story was just complete nonsense. This really was a safe product. But it did hit a nerve and factories were shut down. Why did this hit a nerve?

    Why is it is crime to take pictures of animal conditions in these farms? What is there to hide? There are real issues to address.

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