Blue Paradise Dairy
Respect the Rooster Blog
My view from the farm!
I hope my thoughts and experiences inspire!!
Please shoot me an email with questions or comments.
Thanks for reading!
|Posted on January 22, 2022 at 11:00 AM|
More to come
|Posted on January 17, 2022 at 2:50 PM|
Environment is most noticeable!!
Our hogs live outside.....and have shelter to go into if they choose.....Pork you buy in the stores...IS confinment farmed pork...there is no way around it...they are kept in large holding barns......that's it...
Pastured Pigs thrive outside in nature with plenty of open space, fresh air, and bright sunshine the way God created them to live.
On our farm they eat a wide variety of pasture grasses, acorns, roots, leaves or grubs.
But remember, pigs are omnivores who need grain in their diet... They're not like a grass-eating-herbivore-cow with four stomachs. Their grain mix we feed is clean, balanced protein, fat, free of any chemical additives.
So while your choice of Pastured Pork supports humane animal treatment and regenerative farming, it also gives your family super nutritious pork to eat with confidence.
Studies show that Pastured Pork has 3-4x more omega-3s, 74% more selenium, and roughly 2x more vitamin D & E compared to regular factory farmed pork.
Those are some very impressive numbers.
Omega-3s help improve brain and heart health while fighting cancer, depression, and Alzheimer's disease... Check out all 17 Omega-3 benefits for yourself. You want as many of these Omega-3s in your diet as possible!
Selenium is also very important. This antioxidant keeps free radicals in check, fights oxidative stress, and defends against chronic conditions like heart disease and cancer. Selenium also helps keep your thyroid healthy so it can properly produce hormones and control your metabolism.
Many Americans are deficient in vitamin D. This is an essential nutrient for your immune system to function well. Your body also requires Vitamin D so it can absorb calcium and phosphorus to build strong bones.
Vitamin E can improve vision and brain health. It's an antioxidant that pares especially well with selenium to bring out the best in each of them. Pretty amazing that Pastured Pork has both!
Maybe it seems like Pastured Pork is almost too good to be true...
But why shouldn't it be remarkably better than confinement farm Pork? God created animals to be raised outdoors with plenty of fresh grass and sunshine!
When we follow God's plan, the result is always high quality, nutrient-dense foods your family can trust.
We are committed to raising our Pastured Pigs with zero antibiotics or artificial growth hormones.
The pastures and grains are always Chemical-Free, anit-biotic free, etc.
All our pigs are humanely raised and then respectfully harvested at our own USDA butcher shop.
Thank-you for choosing nutrient-dense Pastured Pork.
PICTURE IS NOT MINE....I SHOW A LOT OF OUR HOGS!
|Posted on January 14, 2022 at 3:40 PM|
This post isn't finsihed yet...as of 1/14
Common Name: Dandelion
Scientific Name: Taraxacum officinale
Weed Type: Broadleaf
Life Cycle: Winter perennial
BEFORE YOU TEAR THEM OUT - PLEASE READ!!! Dandelions are (usually) the first flowers in the spring! The first nector source for polinators, bees, butterflies, bugs! They can grow just about anywhere...in any soil condtion.
Though their yellow heads are flowers to us, and they’re actually a member of the daisy family, botanists consider the dandelion to be an herb, the entire body of a dandelion from bloom to stem is edible. They actually have more nutrients and are better for you than many of the vegetables in your garden.
While many people think of dandelions as weeds that are a nuisance in the yard, they’re actually quite good for the grass as their roots spread wide, acting as an aerator for the soil, while their roots also soak up nutrients from the deeper soil and spread those nutrients throughout the yard, working as fertilizer. However, since dandelions aren’t exactly wanted in a yard, many homeowners have discovered just how difficult it is to get rid of them; dandelions are a hard flower to kill.
I SEE NO REASON TO KILL THEM..............WHY ?? OUR POLUNIATORS REALLY DO NEED THEM.
|Posted on January 5, 2022 at 12:55 AM|
Nutrients in Butter
The Diet Dictocrats have succeeded in convincing Americans that butter is dangerous, when in fact it is a valued component of many traditional diets and a source of the following nutrients:
Fat-Soluble Vitamins: These include true vitamin A or retinol, vitamin D, vitamin K and vitamin E as well as all their naturally occurring cofactors needed to obtain maximum effect. Butter is America’s best source of these important nutrients. In fact, vitamin A is more easily absorbed and utilized from butter than from other sources.61 Fortunately, these fat-soluble vitamins are relatively stable and survive the pasteurization process.
When Dr. Weston Price studied isolated traditional peoples around the world, he found that butter was a staple in many native diets. (He did not find any isolated peoples who consumed polyunsaturated oils.) The groups he studied particularly valued the deep yellow butter produced by cows feeding on rapidly growing green grass. Their natural intuition told them that its life-giving qualities were especially beneficial for children and expectant mothers. When Dr. Price analyzed this deep yellow butter he found that it was exceptionally high in all fat-soluble vitamins, particularly vitamin A. He called these vitamins “catalysts” or “activators.” Without them, according to Dr. Price, we are not able to utilize the minerals we ingest, no matter how abundant they may be in our diets. He also believed the fat-soluble vitamins to be necessary for absorption of the water-soluble vitamins. Vitamins A and D are essential for growth, for healthy bones, for proper development of the brain and nervous systems and for normal sexual development. Many studies have shown the importance of butterfat for reproduction; its absence results in “nutritional castration,” the failure to bring out male and female sexual characteristics. As butter consumption in America has declined, sterility rates and problems with sexual development have increased. In calves, butter substitutes are unable to promote growth or sustain reproduction.62
Not all the societies Dr. Price studied ate butter; but all the groups he observed went to great lengths to obtain foods high in fat-soluble vitamins—fish, shellfish, fish eggs, organ meats, blubber of sea animals and insects. Without knowing the names of the vitamins contained in these foods, isolated traditional societies recognized their importance in the diet and liberally ate the animal products containing them. They rightly believed such foods to be necessary for fertility and the optimum development of children. Dr. Price analyzed the nutrient content of native diets and found that they consistently provided about ten times more fat soluble vitamins than the American diet of the 1930’s. This ratio is probably more extreme today as Americans have deliberately reduced animal fat consumption. Dr. Price realized that these fat-soluble vitamins promoted the beautiful bone structure, wide palate, flawless uncrowded teeth and handsome, well-proportioned faces that characterized members of isolated traditional groups. American children in general do not eat fish or organ meats, at least not to any great extent, and blubber and insects are not a part of the western diet; many will not eat eggs. The only good source of fat-soluble vitamins in the American diet, one sure to be eaten, is butterfat. Butter added to vegetables and spread on bread, and cream added to soups and sauces, ensure proper assimilation of the minerals and water-soluble vitamins in vegetables, grains and meat.
The Wulzen Factor: Called the “antistiffness” factor, this compound is present in raw animal fat. Researcher Rosalind Wulzen discovered that this substance protects humans and animals from calcification of the joints—degenerative arthritis. It also protects against hardening of the arteries, cataracts and calcification of the pineal gland.63 Calves fed pasteurized milk or skim milk develop joint stiffness and do not thrive. Their symptoms are reversed when raw butterfat is added to the diet. Pasteurization destroys the Wulzen factor—it is present only in raw butter, cream and whole milk.
The Price Factor or Activator X: Discovered by Dr. Price, Activator X is a powerful catalyst which, like vitamins A and D, helps the body absorb and utilize minerals. It is found in organ meats from grazing animals and some sea food. Butter can be an especially rich source of Activator X when it comes from cows eating rapidly growing grass in the spring and fall seasons. It disappears in cows fed cottonseed meal or high protein soy-based feeds.64 Fortunately, Activator X is not destroyed by pasteurization. UPDATE: Activator X is now believed to be the fat-soluble vitamin K2; read Chris Masterjohn’s article to see how this 60-year mystery was finally solved.
Arachidonic Acid: A 20-carbon polyunsaturate containing four double bonds, found in small amounts only in animal fats. Arachidonic acid (AA) plays a role in the function of the brain, is a vital component of the cell membranes and is a precursor to important prostaglandins. Some dietary gurus warn against eating foods rich in AA, claiming that it contributes to the production of “bad” prostaglandins, ones that cause inflammation. But prostaglandins that counteract inflammation are also made from AA.
Short- and Medium-Chain Fatty Acids: Butter contains about 12-15% short- and medium-chain fatty acids. This type of saturated fat does not need to be emulsified by bile salts but is absorbed directly from the small intestine to the liver, where it is converted into quick energy. These fatty acids also have antimicrobial, antitumor and immune-system-supporting properties, especially 12-carbon lauric acid, a medium-chain fatty acid not found in other animal fats. Highly protective lauric acid should be called a conditionally essential fatty acid because it is made only by the mammary gland and not in the liver like other saturated fats.65 We must obtain it from one of two dietary sources—small amounts in butterfat or large amounts in coconut oil. Four-carbon butyric acid is all but unique to butter. It has antifungal properties as well as antitumor effects.66
Omega-6 and Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids: These occur in butter in small but nearly equal amounts. This excellent balance between linoleic and linolenic acid prevents the kind of problems associated with overconsumption of omega-6 fatty acids.
Conjugated Linoleic Acid: Butter from pasture-fed cows also contains a form of rearranged linoleic acid called CLA, which has strong anticancer properties. It also encourages the buildup of muscle and prevents weight gain. CLA disappears when cows are fed dry hay or processed feed.67
Lecithin: Lecithin is a natural component of butter that assists in the proper assimilation and metabolization of cholesterol and other fat constituents.
Cholesterol: Mother’s milk is high in cholesterol because it is essential for growth and development. Cholesterol is also needed to produce a variety of steroids that protect against cancer, heart disease and mental illness.
Glycosphingolipids: This type of fat protects against gastrointestinal infections, especially in the very young and the elderly. For this reason, children who drink skimmed milk have diarrhea at rates three to five times greater than children who drink whole milk.68
Trace Minerals: Many trace minerals are incorporated into the fat globule membrane of butterfat, including manganese, zinc, chromium and iodine. In mountainous areas far from the sea, iodine in butter protects against goiter. Butter is extremely rich in selenium, a trace mineral with antioxidant properties, containing more per gram than herring or wheat germ.
One frequently voiced objection to the consumption of butter and other animal fats is that they tend to accumulate environmental poisons. Fat-soluble poisons such as DDT do accumulate in fats; but water-soluble poisons, such as antibiotics and growth hormones, accumulate in the water fraction of milk and meats. Vegetables and grains also accumulate poisons. The average plant crop receives ten applications of pesticides—from planting to storage—while cows generally graze on pasture that is unsprayed. Aflatoxin, a fungus that grows on grain, is one of the most powerful carcinogens known. It is correct to assume that all of our foods, whether of vegetable or animal origin, may be contaminated. The solution to environmental poisons is not to eliminate animal fats—so essential to growth, reproduction and overall health—but to seek out organic meats and butter from pasture-fed cows, as well as organic vegetables and grains. These are becoming increasingly available in health food stores and supermarkets and through mail order and cooperatives.
Thank you Weston Price
|Posted on January 5, 2022 at 12:55 AM|
The Benefits of Saturated Fats
The much-maligned saturated fats—which Americans are trying to avoid—are not the cause of our modern diseases. In fact, they play many important roles in the body chemistry:
Saturated fatty acids constitute at least 50% of the cell membranes. They are what gives our cells necessary stiffness and integrity.
They play a vital role in the health of our bones. For calcium to be effectively incorporated into the skeletal structure, at least 50% of the dietary fats should be saturated.38
They lower Lp(a), a substance in the blood that indicates proneness to heart disease.39 They protect the liver from alcohol and other toxins, such as Tylenol.40
They enhance the immune system.41
They are needed for the proper utilization of essential fatty acids.
Elongated omega-3 fatty acids are better retained in the tissues when the diet is rich in saturated fats. 42
Saturated 18-carbon stearic acid and 16-carbon palmitic acid are the preferred foods for the heart, which is why the fat around the heart muscle is highly saturated.43 The heart draws on this reserve of fat in times of stress.
Short- and medium-chain saturated fatty acids have important antimicrobial properties. They protect us against harmful microorganisms in the digestive tract.
The scientific evidence, honestly evaluated, does not support the assertion that “artery-clogging” saturated fats cause heart disease.44 Actually, evaluation of the fat in artery clogs reveals that only about 26% is saturated. The rest is unsaturated, of which more than half is polyunsaturated.45
What about Cholesterol?
And what about cholesterol? Here, too, the public has been misinformed. Our blood vessels can become damaged in a number of ways—through irritations caused by free radicals or viruses, or because they are structurally weak—and when this happens, the body’s natural healing substance steps in to repair the damage. That substance is cholesterol. Cholesterol is a high-molecular-weight alcohol that is manufactured in the liver and in most human cells. Like saturated fats, the cholesterol we make and consume plays many vital roles:
Along with saturated fats, cholesterol in the cell membrane gives our cells necessary stiffness and stability. When the diet contains an excess of polyunsaturated fatty acids, these replace saturated fatty acids in the cell membrane, so that the cell walls actually become flabby. When this happens, cholesterol from the blood is “driven” into the tissues to give them structural integrity. This is why serum cholesterol levels may go down temporarily when we replace saturated fats with polyunsaturated oils in the diet.46
Cholesterol acts as a precursor to vital corticosteroids, hormones that help us deal with stress and protect the body against heart disease and cancer; and to the sex hormones like androgen, testosterone, estrogen and progesterone.
Cholesterol is a precursor to vitamin D, a very important fat-soluble vitamin needed for healthy bones and nervous system, proper growth, mineral metabolism, muscle tone, insulin production, reproduction and immune system function.
The bile salts are made from cholesterol. Bile is vital for digestion and assimilation of fats in the diet.
Recent research shows that cholesterol acts as an antioxidant.47 This is the likely explanation for the fact that cholesterol levels go up with age. As an antioxidant, cholesterol protects us against free radical damage that leads to heart disease and cancer.
Cholesterol is needed for proper function of serotonin receptors in the brain.48 Serotonin is the body’s natural “feel-good” chemical. Low cholesterol levels have been linked to aggressive and violent behavior, depression and suicidal tendencies.
Mother’s milk is especially rich in cholesterol and contains a special enzyme that helps the baby utilize this nutrient. Babies and children need cholesterol-rich foods throughout their growing years to ensure proper development of the brain and nervous system.
Dietary cholesterol plays an important role in maintaining the health of the intestinal wall.49 This is why low-cholesterol vegetarian diets can lead to leaky gut syndrome and other intestinal disorders.
Cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease but rather a potent antioxidant weapon against free radicals in the blood, and a repair substance that helps heal arterial damage (although the arterial plaques themselves contain very little cholesterol.) However, like fats, cholesterol may be damaged by exposure to heat and oxygen. This damaged or oxidized cholesterol seems to promote both injury to the arterial cells as well as a pathological buildup of plaque in the arteries.50 Damaged cholesterol is found in powdered eggs, in powdered milk (added to reduced-fat milks to give them body) and in meats and fats that have been heated to high temperatures in frying and other high-temperature processes.
High serum cholesterol levels often indicate that the body needs cholesterol to protect itself from high levels of altered, free-radical-containing fats. Just as a large police force is needed in a locality where crime occurs frequently, so cholesterol is needed in a poorly nourished body to protect the individual from a tendency to heart disease and cancer. Blaming coronary heart disease on cholesterol is like blaming the police for murder and theft in a high crime area.
Poor thyroid function (hypothyroidism) will often result in high cholesterol levels. When thyroid function is poor, usually due to a diet high in sugar and low in usable iodine, fat-soluble vitamins and other nutrients, the body floods the blood with cholesterol as an adaptive and protective mechanism, providing a superabundance of materials needed to heal tissues and produce protective steroids. Hypothyroid individuals are particularly susceptible to infections, heart disease and cancer.51
The Cause and Treatment of Heart Disease
The cause of heart disease is not animal fats and cholesterol but rather a number of factors inherent in modern diets, including excess consumption of vegetables oils and hydrogenated fats; excess consumption of refined carbohydrates in the form of sugar and white flour; mineral deficiencies, particularly low levels of protective magnesium and iodine; deficiencies of vitamins, particularly of vitamin C, needed for the integrity of the blood vessel walls, and of antioxidants like selenium and vitamin E, which protect us from free radicals; and, finally, the disappearance of antimicrobial fats from the food supply, namely, animal fats and tropical oils.52 These once protected us against the kinds of viruses and bacteria that have been associated with the onset of pathogenic plaque leading to heart disease.
While serum cholesterol levels provide an inaccurate indication of future heart disease, a high level of a substance called homocysteine in the blood has been positively correlated with pathological buildup of plaque in the arteries and the tendency to form clots—a deadly combination. Folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and choline are nutrients that lower serum homocysteine levels.53 These nutrients are found mostly in animal foods.
The best way to treat heart disease, then, is not to focus on lowering cholesterol—either by drugs or diet—but to consume a diet that provides animal foods rich in vitamins B6 and B12; to bolster thyroid function by daily use of natural sea salt, a good source of usable iodine; to avoid vitamin and mineral deficiencies that make the artery walls more prone to ruptures and the buildup of plaque; to include the antimicrobial fats in the diet; and to eliminate processed foods containing refined carbohydrates, oxidized cholesterol and free-radical-containing vegetable oils that cause the body to need constant repair.
Modern Methods of Processing Fats
It is important to understand that, of all substances ingested by the body, it is polyunsaturated oils that are most easily rendered dangerous by food processing, especially unstable omega-3 linolenic acid. Consider the following processes inflicted upon naturally occurring fatty acids before they appear on our tables:
Extraction: Oils naturally occurring in fruits, nuts and seeds must first be extracted. In the old days this extraction was achieved by slow-moving stone presses. But oils processed in large factories are obtained by crushing the oil-bearing seeds and heating them to 230 degrees. The oil is then squeezed out at pressures from 10 to 20 tons per inch, thereby generating more heat. During this process the oils are exposed to damaging light and oxygen. In order to extract the last 10% or so of the oil from crushed seeds, processors treat the pulp with one of a number of solvents—usually hexane. The solvent is then boiled off, although up to 100 parts per million may remain in the oil. Such solvents, themselves toxic, also retain the toxic pesticides adhering to seeds and grains before processing begins.
High-temperature processing causes the weak carbon bonds of unsaturated fatty acids, especially triple unsaturated linolenic acid, to break apart, thereby creating dangerous free radicals. In addition, antioxidants, such as fat-soluble vitamin E, which protect the body from the ravages of free radicals, are neutralized or destroyed by high temperatures and pressures. BHT and BHA, both suspected of causing cancer and brain damage, are often added to these oils to replace vitamin E and other natural preservatives destroyed by heat.
There is a safe modern technique for extraction that drills into the seeds and extracts the oil and its precious cargo of antioxidants under low temperatures, with minimal exposure to light and oxygen. These expeller-expressed, unrefined oils will remain fresh for a long time if stored in the refrigerator in dark bottles. Extra virgin olive oil is produced by crushing olives between stone or steel rollers. This process is a gentle one that preserves the integrity of the fatty acids and the numerous natural preservatives in olive oil. If olive oil is packaged in opaque containers, it will retain its freshness and precious store of antioxidants for many years.
Hydrogenation: This is the process that turns polyunsaturates, normally liquid at room temperature, into fats that are solid at room temperature—margarine and shortening. To produce them, manufacturers begin with the cheapest oils—soy, corn, cottonseed or canola, already rancid from the extraction process—and mix them with tiny metal particles—usually nickel oxide. The oil with its nickel catalyst is then subjected to hydrogen gas in a high-pressure, high-temperature reactor. Next, soap-like emulsifiers and starch are squeezed into the mixture to give it a better consistency; the oil is yet again subjected to high temperatures when it is steam-cleaned. This removes its unpleasant odor. Margarine’s natural color, an unappetizing grey, is removed by bleach. Dyes and strong flavors must then be added to make it resemble butter. Finally, the mixture is compressed and packaged in blocks or tubs and sold as a health food.
Partially hydrogenated margarines and shortenings are even worse for you than the highly refined vegetable oils from which they are made because of chemical changes that occur during the hydrogenation process. Under high temperatures, the nickel catalyst causes the hydrogen atoms to change position on the fatty acid chain. Before hydrogenation, pairs of hydrogen atoms occur together on the chain, causing the chain to bend slightly and creating a concentration of electrons at the site of the double bond. This is called the cis formation, the configuration most commonly found in nature. With hydrogenation, one hydrogen atom of the pair is moved to the other side so that the molecule straightens. This is called the trans formation, rarely found in nature. Most of these man-made trans fats are toxins to the body, but unfortunately your digestive system does not recognize them as such. Instead of being eliminated, trans fats are incorporated into cell membranes as if they were cis fats—your cells actually become partially hydrogenated! Once in place, trans fatty acids with their misplaced hydrogen atoms wreak havoc in cell metabolism because chemical reactions can only take place when electrons in the cell membranes are in certain arrangements or patterns, which the hydrogenation process has disturbed.
In the 1940’s, researchers found a strong correlation between cancer and the consumption of fat—the fats used were hydrogenated fats although the results were presented as though the culprit were saturated fats.54 In fact, until recently saturated fats were usually lumped together with trans fats in the various U.S. data bases that researchers use to correlate dietary trends with disease conditions.55 Thus, natural saturated fats were tarred with the black brush of unnatural hydrogenated vegetable oils.
Altered partially hydrogenated fats made from vegetable oils actually block utilization of essential fatty acids, causing many deleterious effects including sexual dysfunction, increased blood cholesterol and paralysis of the immune system.56 Consumption of hydrogenated fats is associated with a host of other serious diseases, not only cancer but also atherosclerosis, diabetes, obesity, immune system dysfunction, low-birth-weight babies, birth defects, decreased visual acuity, sterility, difficulty in lactation and problems with bones and tendons.57 Yet hydrogenated fats continue to be promoted as health foods. The popularity of partially hydrogenated margarine over butter represents a triumph of advertising duplicity over common sense. Your best defense is to avoid it like the plague.
Homogenization: This is the process whereby the fat particles of cream are strained through tiny pores under great pressure. The resulting fat particles are so small that they stay in suspension rather than rise to the top of the milk. This makes the fat and cholesterol more susceptible to rancidity and oxidation, and some research indicates that homogenized fats may contribute to heart disease.58
The media’s constant attack on saturated fats is extremely suspect. Claims that butter causes chronic high cholesterol values have not been substantiated by research—although some studies show that butter consumption causes a small, temporary rise—while other studies have shown that stearic acid, the main component of beef fat, actually lowers cholesterol.59 Margarine, on the other hand, provokes chronic high levels of cholesterol and has been linked to both heart disease and cancer.60 The new soft margarines or tub spreads, while lower in hydrogenated fats, are still produced from rancid vegetable oils and contain many additives.
Thank you Weston Price Foundation
|Posted on January 4, 2022 at 10:25 AM|
HIGH COST OF CHEAP FOOD
This year American consumers will spend 10% of their household disposable
income on food – a lower percentage than any country in the world. As
Americans, we are told that cheap and abundant food is the backbone of a
thriving economy. The fact is that cheap food often comes at a cost that is often
not reflected in the supermarket price tag. Farming communities struggle. The
environment suffers. And our overall public health gets compromised when price
takes precedent over quality and safety.
Why is U.S. food so cheap?
We can attribute much of our cheap food to the large expansion of industrial
agriculture over the last 50 years – a system that substitutes fossil fuel energy,
chemicals and capital for labor and management. Larger farms operate on lower
labor costs and are able to take advantage of large-scale economies that
produce more for less. The U.S. government offers many incentives, such as tax
breaks and subsidies, which favor large farms with little diversity. As large-scale
agriculture has expanded, so has concentration and consolidation within the food
industry. In the Midwest, four firms now control the processing of a variety of farm
products (corn, soybeans, beef, etc) that thousands of farmers produce.1
Because agribusiness and food retailers encourage farmers to produce a limited
range of crops to simplify their marketing and distribution operations, different
regions of the U.S. specialize in a limited number of crops and livestock. As a
result, the majority of food sold in the typical grocery, convenience and superstore must be shipped to reach market. A 2001 study found that the average
Midwestern meal travels 1,518 miles to get from producer to consumer. 2
The Social/Economic Costs
Every year the U.S. loses thousands of farmers to a food system in which they
are not paid an adequate price for what they produce. Between 1993 and 1997
the number of mid-sized family farms dropped by 74,440. Farmers have been
urged to “get big or get out.” Now just 2% of U.S. farms produce 50% of
agricultural product sales. 3 Although commodity prices for corn and soybeans,
adjusting for inflation, are considerably lower than in the 1970s, the price of food
has continued to rise with inflation. From 1989 to 1999 consumer expenditures
for farm foods rose by $199 billion, 92% of which can be attributed to the
marketing costs of agribusiness and food companies. These expenses include
transportation, packaging, labor and inputs used to sell food products.Meanwhile,
the farmer only gets 20 cents of each dollar spent on food, down from 41 cents
back in 1950. Unable to capture more of the food dollar, farmers are stuck in a
vicious cycle to produce high volumes of cheap commodities with a low profit
margin. When we lose farmers and farm families we also lose farmland.
Encroaching urban areas drive up the real estate value of farms located on the
fringe. More than 6 million acres of rural land, an area the size of Maryland, were
developed between 1992 and 1997, often on the nation’s best farmland.5 With
the loss of food/fiber producing capabilities the country also loses wildlife habitat
and the aesthetic qualities of America’s rural countrysides – all costs that are
unquantifiable and irreplaceable.
The corn and soybean crops that dominate the Midwest often cause soil loss and
impair water quality through the leaching and runoff of fertilizers and pesticides.
The ecosystem in the Gulf of Mexico is ailing from a growing zone of low oxygen
caused by excessive nitrogen from fertilizers on cropland upstream. This
phenomenon, a hypoxic zone the size of New Jersey, affects the communities
and fishermen that live by and work on the Gulf of Mexico. 6 Eighty percent of all
the corn grown in the U. S. goes to feed livestock, poultry and fish. Access to
inexpensive corn and soybeans has facilitated the rapid growth of large-scale
confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) that feed a domestic and
international appetite for cheap meat. The U.S. protein industry (swine, poultry,
beef and dairy) generates an estimated 2 trillion pounds of manure a year7 and
can have significant impacts on the environment, threatening neighboring
waterways and air quality with potentially noxious fumes.82003
THE COSTS OF CHEAP FOOD
INSTITUTE FOR AGRICULTURE
& TRADE POLICY
Billions of gallons of petroleum fuel are required annually for the trucks that
transport food across the United States.9 This does not include fuel used by
trains, barges or planes that also transport food products. U.S. taxpayers pay the
price through subsidies to our roads and highways, more dependence on
imported oil and increased fossil fuel emissions that contribute to environmental
problems like smog and climate change.
Public Health Costs
A number of emerging public health concerns have resulted from the production
and processing of food that is increasingly concentrated and automated. Many of
the country’s CAFOs add antibiotics to livestock feed. An estimated 70% of all
antibiotics in the U.S. go into healthy pigs, poultry and cattle to increase animal
weight and to minimize disease risks associated with the large numbers of
animals within one complex.10 A growing number of studies show that routine
use of antibiotics can encourage the growth of antibiotic resistant bacteria which
can make treating human bacterial diseases more difficult and potentially life
threatening. Today’s centralized systems for meat production and processing are
more susceptible to large-scale contamination by food borne pathogens. Food
recalls are increasing. The largest food recall in U.S. history took place in
October 2002, when the country’s second largest poultry producer recalled 27.4
million pounds of fresh and frozen poultry products after an outbreak of listeriosis
killed 20 people and sickened 120 others.11 While cheap food is plentiful, it is not
necessarily healthy – over half of U.S. citizens are considered overweight. 12
Currently, the United States is plagued with an epidemic of chronic diseases
associated with over-consumption (obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease,
and certain cancers) that health professionals attribute to both a decline in
physical activity and an abundance of products high in animal fat and refined
carbohydrates and low in fiber. Additionally, cheap food has not eliminated
hunger. Using U.S. Department of Agriculture’s conservative definitions, 5.6
million adults and 2.7 million children in the US are hungry.13
Winners and Losers in the Cheap Food Game
Cheap food, rather than fostering a food system that benefits the general
American public, has promoted an increasingly industrialized agriculture.
Expanding national and multinational food companies that purchase cheap
commodities continue to increase their profits. Meanwhile, farmers and rural
communities in the United States do not benefit. A health care system, taxed with
an epidemic of diet related diseases, does not benefit. And the environment
certainly does not benefit. But there are other ways to fill America’s dinner plate.
Regional food systems that support the local production and processing of farm
products grown in environmentally sensible ways are emerging throughout the
country. These systems take out the “middle men” and put the profits back into
the pockets of the farmers and communities they support. Farmers markets,
Community Supported Agriculture farms, restaurants featuring locally produced
foods, and "Buy Local" campaigns give consumers the choice to buy food that is
not only affordable, but benefit farmers, the natural environment and local
1 Hendrickson, M. and W. Heffernon (2002). “Concentration of Agricultural Markets,” Department
of Rural Sociology - University of Missouri. February.
2 R. Pirog et al (2001).
3 USDA (1997). Census of Agriculture
4 USDA Economic Research Service
5 American Farmland Trust (2002). “Farming on the Edge.” Online at:
6 D.A. Goolsby and W.A. Battaglin (2000). “Nitrogen in the Mississippi Basin-Estimating Sources
and Predicting Flux to the Gulf of Mexico,” USGS Fact Sheet, 135-00. December. Online at:
7 Environmental Defense (2002). “Scorecard - Animal Waste from Factory Farms.” Online at:
8 USEPA (2001). “Environmental Assessment of Proposed Revisions to the National Pollutant
Discharge Elimination System Regulation and the Effluent Guidelines for Concentrated Animal
Feeding Operations,” EPA-81-B-01-001. January.
10 Mellon M. et al. (2001). “Hogging It: Estimates of Antimicrobial Abuse in Livestock,” Union of
Concerned Scientists. Cambridge, MA.
11 Abboud, L. (2002). “Fatal Strain of Bacteria Traced To Pilgrim’s Pride Meat Plant,” Wall Street
Journal, October 16.
12 Center for Disease Control (2002). “U.S. Obesity Trends from 1985 to 2000.” Online at:
Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy 2105 First Avenue S. Minneapolis, MN 5
For more information on IATP’s work on cheap food and related topics, go to
Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy 2105 First Avenue S. Minneapolis, MN 55404
|Posted on December 20, 2021 at 11:00 AM|
2 C all-purpose flour
1 C sugar
1 tsp. b. powder
1 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
Mix well with whisk
add 3/4 c melted butter
1 C sour cream
1 tsp vanilla or almond
Combine all, dough will be thick and sticky. PAT into a greased 9x13.
ADD any number of toppings - Cook blueberries, raspberries, on medium heat with brown sugar and water till thick. OR ADD Jam, preserves, dry or candied fruit. Sprinkle with brown sugar mixed with oatmeal.
Bake 350 - 30 min or so - PUT the coffee on!!
|Posted on December 18, 2021 at 11:00 AM|
Ground beef, pork, chicken, turkey - Your choice or a mix of.
ALL in the crock combine ground meat, a couple eggs, hand full of seasonings, parsley, garlic S&P, red pepper flake. etc, Can add bread crumbs, or cubes, crackers, chunks of cheese. Shape meat into a round bowl shape in the middle of crock, add Your choice of veggies, potatoes, greens.
A nice combination is beef, pork, eggs, crumbs, herbs, raw sliced mushrooms, and two cans of cream of mushroom soup, mixed with milk and poured over "Meat loaf"
Set to low - 4 - 5 hours, test to see if done. Add a bag of wavy egg noodles last 1/2 to 1 one hour and an extra cup of water. Cover and the crock-pot will steam.
Classic spaghetti meat loaf - Your choice of ground meat mix, with eggs, bread crumbs, oregano, basil, garlic, Shape into round loaf, cover with chopped onions, two cans diced tomatoes with juice, 2 cans of your favorite pasta sauce. Set to low 4-6 Hours - This is SO easy, one pot wonder and all the flavors mix so well....time is the secret!
In a separate pot boil water, salt, add pasta - cook till tender.
Butter some French bread for toast and sprinkle with garlic salt - Enjoy!