You may have heard things about the beef industry that are scary. Things that make you grossed out, freaked out, or just plain mad. Things that most likely are at best exaggerations, at worst – completely false! I have read things online that make me shake my head in disbelief. (Weight-loss groups and ‘healthy-eating’ groups are notorious for spreading ridiculous myths about the beef industry.) Obviously, I can’t speak for all ranchers and all situations – I am but one small person on this big earth. But here are some myths I can dispel for ya:
1. Cows are raised in dungeons. I have lived on several ranches, and not once have I seen cows locked up in smelly rooms with nothing but hormones to eat. They spend their lazy days in the bright sunshine, wandering at will over thousands of acres of green grass and drinking clear water from sparkling creeks. They lay in the grass and chew their cud and look stupidly around. They are well-cared for, since they are the source of income for our families. I wish some of you city folk could see the care these tough ranchers put into their cows. They haul water in the heat of the drought, and chop ice in 40+mph-below-freezing wind.
2. Cows are full of antibiotics. Sure, if they need it – they get a shot or two of meds. But we don’t just randomly go around and give shots to healthy cattle! Those meds cost money, people! We prefer if they don’t need antibiotics.
3. Cows should be kept inside during the winter, in red barns with white criss-crosses on the door. Cattle (and most other livestock) have hides and hair that is uniquely designed by the Creator to protect them in the coldest weather. There are great articles to prove this – I am not a scientist, so I won’t confuse you by trying to explain it to you. (Google, anyone?) Suffice it to say, that even when you have them in a pasture with barns and windbreaks in – they will not go in the barn or stand behind the windbreak. They will stay out in the blizzard winds. Now, this may be due to their ignorance and general stupidity, I can’t say for sure. But I have a hunch that if they were cold they’d go into the barn.
This is not to say that weather doesn’t affect them – it most certainly can! Just take the blizzard of last fall for example. Killed many cattle. (so sorry to you fellow-ranchers affected!) But normal winter conditions are usually well-tolerated.
So the next time you read some outcry against the beef industry, make sure the writer has some actual experience, will ya? Someone living miles and generations away from the industry rarely knows exactly what is going on in the beef industry. 😉
Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner.
What ridiculous accusations have you heard about the beef industry?