Living Beyond Organic Mom

If You Care About What's In Your Food!

Recent Case of Mad Cow Disease in California!


Cattle into Cannibals. The Real Issue with the Recent Case of Mad Cow Disease

By now, you are probably aware that a case of Mad Cow Disease was confirmed yesterday. The cow in question was discovered in California, and already it has set off a chain reaction of government pundits and food experts rushing in to say there isn’t a problem.

Well, yes and no. There have only been four cases of Mad Cow Disease ever found in the United States. However, what gets glossed over is how a common practice in conventional cattle management can contribute to the spread of this nasty disease. It’s one of the ugly truths that Big Dairy doesn’t want you to know about. If you’re squeamish, you may not want to read what I’m about to tell you.

It is common practice in the dairy industry to turn cattle into cannibals. That’s right, to turn a natural plant-eating animal into a cannibal. “Waste” product from slaughtered cows is routinely turned into “feed” that goes back to the livestock herd. In what I find to be the most appalling example, the blood from these slaughtered animals is sometimes dried and added back to the “replacer” milk for calves. You heard that right, young calves often drink blood.  And, it’s perfectly legal to allow this to happen, and it’s been going on for decades!

The following is taken directly from the FDA’s website. For those that don’t know “BSE” stands for Bovine Spongiform Encephalopath and is the scientific name for Mad Cow Disease. Here is the direct quote from the FDA website:

How was BSE spread?It is thought that BSE was spread via meat-and-bone meal fed to cattle. The practice of using this material as a source of protein in cattle feed has been common for several decades. In the late 1970s there was a change in the production (rendering) process used to make this meat and bone meal. One hypothesis has been that this change permitted the infectious agent of scrapie (a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy, or TSE, of sheep) to survive the rendering process, and get transmitted to other animals, such as cows, that are fed meat-and-bone meal nutritional supplements. An inquiry by the British government has however, concluded that scrapie infected MBM was not the source of BSE nor was the change in the rendering practices responsible for survival of the BSE agent. Rather, this inquiry has stated that BSE may have originated spontaneously as a result of a genetic mutation and was amplified by the feeding of contaminated MBM to cattle

Please, please, please STOP supporting the producers who adhere to the practice of turning cattle into cannibals. Yes, the practice is unsafe, but more than that it’s inhumane



What is GMO?

Stop! Genetically modified organism(s) - GMO.

Stop! Genetically modified organism(s) - GMO. (Photo credit: in search for a new country of residence)

What is GMO ? So glad you asked, let me regale you. GMO is an acronym for Genetically Modified Organism. They have been created through the gene-splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering, or GE). This relatively new science allows DNA from one species to be injected into another species in a laboratory, creating combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.”GMO food may make you sick. Studies link GMOs with toxins, allergies, infertility, infant mortality, immune dysfunction, stunted growth, accelerated aging, and death.”

In 30 other countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production of GMOs, because they are not considered proven safe. According to the USDA in 2009, 93% of soy, 93% of cotton, and 86% of corn grown in the U.S. were GMO.

There is absolutely no consumer benefit’s to GMO’s. A 2008 CBS News Poll found that 87% of consumers wanted GMOs labeled). And, according to a recent CBS/New York Times poll, 53% of consumers said they would not buy food that has been genetically modified. Here’s some good news though,  it’ll only take 5% of the U.S population to change what type/brands of foods they buy in order for the largest food conglomerates to switch back to non GMO, due to a reduction in their market share. Basically it comes down to simple mathematics. GMO means agribusiness, agribusiness is Kraft, Heinz,Kellog’s, Quaker, Nestle, etc. etc. the list goes on and on. These companies purchase the commodity crops because they’re grown faster and cheaper. For us the consumer that translates to less safe and empty food nutritionally. All these things play a factor in these companies “bottom line.” It’s up to us as consumers to determine which way the food industry swings. We all vote with every dollar that is spent on the “national brands.”

I will elaborate more on how GMO’s are far less nutritionally dense in a follow up post. Thank you for stopping by. If you like this article please spread the word. Thank you! God Bless!

The reason behind GMO’s is agribusiness.




Where’s my Kashi?

This picture was posted by a friend of mine today on her FB, I asked if I could share it, so here it is. Too funny! This is what I’m talking about people….LOL! Why am I NOT surprised!

Nuff said! If you would like to learn more about non GMO, pesticide free food visit this link at beyond organic IT’s FAST, EASY and very user friendly. Sincerely, Celina Hoffman.


Watch this video…we need proper food labeling


Food Recalls

Interview with Joel Salatin

November 26, 2009

Joel SalatinFood recalls seem out of control these days. We’re not just seeing a few sporadic cases of food poisoning here and there anymore. I regularly publish recall alerts for hundreds of thousands of pounds of beef and poultry. Here’s a recent one for half-a-million pounds of beef possibly contaminated with E. coli O157:H7. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg if you factor in the pages upon pages of salmonella recalls.

It’s enough to make you scared of eating anything. In fact, it is enough to make us call our legislators and demand action! The problem is – we don’t ask ourselves, or our legislators, if we’re taking the “right” action. What we end up with are misguided attempts at regulation and laws written by academia and corporate agriculture, such as NAIS. Perhaps we need to take a step back and ask ourselves if we’re treating the symptom or the problem. One man who has done just that is Joel Salatin. I have been granted the honor of asking Mr. Salatin a few questions about our nation’s food supply – especially in regard to food safety – and without further digression I’d like to share his responses with you.

Do you think there are more cases of food-borne illnesses per-capita these days, or are we just hearing about more of them due to the media and better reporting by government agencies?

I believe we’re having far more per capita. While it’s true we’ve always had food issues, from botulism poisoning to undulant fever, the historic figures are very, very low. If you add obesity and Type II diabetes into the mix – in a way, they are pathogenically caused as well because the food is not real food; it’s pseudo food. Amazingly, we’ve become a culture that considers Twinkies, Cocoa Puffs, and Mountain Dew safe, but raw milk and compost-grown tomatoes unsafe. The fact that we have an entirely new lexicon of salmonellalisteriabovine spongiform encephalopathycampylobacterE. coli, etc. speaks to the new generation and penetration of the current food borne pathogen situation. Furthermore, it’s hard to empirically measure secondary results of tainted food, like the things that occur when people eat genetically modified organisms, irradiated foods, or pasteurized milk. Some of these things take a while to develop into problems, just like infertile frogs, three-legged salamanders, and crippled eagles did not happen immediately when DDT was developed. The long lag between cause and effect is hard to measure, and very hard to quantify in today’s fast-paced data and news system.

Do you see a legitimate, defensible role for state and federal government agencies to play in protecting American consumers from food-borne illnesses? If so, what would that be?

No. This side of eternity, a perfect system does not exist. To assume that government agents are more trustworthy than business, or journalists, or farmers, is inherently ridiculous. Unscrupulous people exist in all vocations. That is why we have third-party independent accreditation that works fairly well in many areas, from certified General Motors mechanics to schools to Triple A to Underwriters LaboratoriesEvery time the government gets involved with these things, rather than being voluntary, they move into the realm of force, and that completely changes the dynamics. When the Sheriff shows up with an arrest warrant and a gun, that’s a very different dynamic than Triple A sending me a letter telling me they will drop my two star hotel status because their inspection found wrinkled sheets in Room 129. And that extra force allows the independent certification status to assume inordinate power, which ultimately attracts more unseemly characters to its model – both the regulators and the regulated. It all boils down to trust. Indeed, on my end I see incredible abuses from regulators, especially toward small operators. When people say we just need to create more honesty in the government program, they are speaking from incredible naïveté, in my opinion. We have more dirty food, more centralized mega-processing facilities, and less nutrition now than we did in 1906 when Teddy Roosevelt railed against the packing industry exposed by Upton Sinclair’sThe Jungle. Both Sinclair, and to a great extent Roosevelt, wanted much bigger government and far more intrusion into the marketplace. Within six months after The Jungle hit America’s shelves, meat sales dropped nearly 50 percent. Rather than waiting for this marketplace spanking to have its effect, Roosevelt and the industry created the Food Safety and Inspection Service. That organization and the incredible power it wields have systematically banished the embedded butcher, baker, and candlestick maker from America’s villages. We’ve had three overhauls of the system: 1947, 1967, and 2000 – and each time, within 18 months, the US lost half of its smallerabattoirs. People must realize that giving that power to the government is inherently flawed because it will inevitably attract abuses that more gentle, voluntary, privately-operated systems do not.

Is there another country in the world that has a safer, more equitable food production system that allows for corporate agribusiness to thrive without putting small farmers out of business and without endangering consumers? If so, what can we learn from them?

My sense is that most developing countries have far more food freedom. Whether it’s safer or not, I don’t know. But it’s certainly no worse. The point is that you can’t define safety necessarily. I consider pastured livestock and poultry safe; the poultry industry considers me a bioterrorist because the Red-winged Blackbirds commiserate with my chickens and will transport their diseases to the since-based, environmentally- controlled Tyson chicken houses, endangering the entire planet’s food system. We’re seeing studies coming out of land grant colleges now saying that meat laced with antibiotic residues due to subtherapeutic antibiotic feeding in Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations is safer for consumers than meat carrying no drug residues. The fact is that those of us promoting a heritage-based food system are under assault by the industrial-governmental fraternity just as surely as Native Americans were nearly annihilated by government policy in earlier times. Largely for the same reasons. They threatened the American way of life (read Wall Street there) or they jeopardized decent western contrivances like Roberts Rules of Order and cobblestone streets. Read what the founders of our country said about the Naive American – “just barbarians”. By whose standard? And read what the government-industrial food complex says about heritage food – it endangers the world food supply because it’s not science-based; it plays to ignorant and duplicitous consumers; it’s a waste of land because we can’t afford these low production numbers, etc.

Historically, respecting an indigenous view while allowing techno-innovation has not been possible. The technology conquers and subjugates the heritage-based. The European Union is attacking heritage-based Polish sausage and Swiss artisanal cheese with a passion. My friends in China tell me that a thriving local food system exists there that would put America to shame. And people not far removed from the land know the difference between the good local stuff and the junk. They export the junk and eat the good stuff themselves. Oh that Americas would have such discernment.

What would a “sane” Food Bill look like to you? Or would there even be one?

We wouldn’t even have a Food Bill if I were in charge. The first response to that is: “But then the big corporations would just take over and it would be worse than today. After all, the free market is why we’re in the mess we’re in.” On the contrary, the U.S. has not had anything resembling a free market for well over a century. You could argue that ever since that big-governmenter Abraham Lincoln created the US Department of Agriculture, we’ve had inappropriate government agents meddling in the food system. The fact is that the terrible food things that have been developed have come at the financing, either directly or through research, of the government. Why does Monsanto get to park their recruitment bus on the campus of Virginia Tech for several days each year – for free? I personally have had numerous professors from Virginia Tech visit our farm and express great interest in researching some of our environmentally-friendly practices, but lament that they can only get seed funding from multi-national corporations so they can’t do this kind of research. Again, the framers of the Constitution very carefully spelled out the duties of the government, and they were extremely minimal. The reason was that as soon as an area of the culture comes under the authority of the government, that area quickly develops cronyism, a big business agenda, and lack of respect for dissenters, which is now what the local food movement represents. I would call it a freedom of food choice movement.

In my book Everything I Want to Do Is Illegal, I quote at length from the written testimony of government food police who make no secret that they believe consumers cannot be trusted to make their food decisions. If choosing how to feed my internal three-trillion member bacterial community that is responsible for my health and energy doesn’t represent the most basic Malthusian desire for personal autonomy, I don’t know what does. The Constitution guarantees the Right of Contract, and yet the food police routinely waltz between the farmer and consumer, waving thousands of pages of regulations, and bringing along agents carrying big badges and sidearms to interfere with the right of contract. If we truly allowed unfettered right of contract, the entrepreneurial explosion of creative heritage-based food offered to the local marketplace would topple America’s industrial food complex.

The only reason America’s food is as industrial and non-local as it is, is because government force encourages such a system. Absent that meddling, thousands and thousands of local food entrepreneurs would spin circles around the subsidized, corporate-welfared food system.

Why don’t small farmers band together to lobby Washington? Could the combined power of thousands of small farmers compete with the centralized power of a few corporate interests?

Lobbying takes time. Lots of time. And numbers. And money. I’ve been trying all my life to encourage this, but like everyone else, I don’t have the time, money, or numbers to get it done. And too many small farmers still believe the government is a sugar daddy. So more than half the potential supporters are lobbying to get subsidies for small farmers instead of big farmers. Why don’t we forget about subsidies? Period. But we’ve raised a generation acculturated to believe government candy is free, and justified. And then certified organics also split up the small farmer group. That probably more than anything splintered what could have been a significant block. Now much of the time and energy that could be devoted to just creating market freedom are being siphoned off in suits and protests against industrial organics. We just still have way too many people who trust the government and think business is inherently evil.

Are house bills H.R. 875 (NAIS) and H.R. 759 (FDA Globalization Act) still a threat to small farmers and sustenance farmers or are people overreacting?

First, let me be clear that the industrial food agenda, along with its complicit government fraternity, is evil. These folks lie, steal, cheat, kill, whatever. It’s an evil agenda, with evil planners, evil strategists, and evil execution. Certainly some sincere-minded and honest folks are caught up in it, but it behooves us to appreciate the evil ambition of these people. When Monsanto purposely used geriatric rats in their GMO feeding trials for the FDA, or cleverly falsified data to receive rBGH approval and infected and afflicted hundreds of thousands of dairy cows with mastitis, and then used crooked judges to agree that placing rBGH-free on milk labels on artisanal milk actually harmed consumers – that bespeaks an evil, deceptive company and agenda. And the rest of their cohorts are just like them. So nobody should think that these outfits have a benign, population-friendly agenda. And nobody should underestimate their connivances to advance their agenda.

That said, here’s my rule for legislation: if Monsanto is for it, I’m against it. If Monsanto is against it, I’m for it. Ditto large meat packers, the USDA, etc. A person is known by the company he keeps. These outfits aren’t Jesus spending time with sinners to bring them to repentance. They are Devils trying to dupe and destroy ecological, economic, and social wholesomeness. This test for legislation can save you lots of time and consternation trying to figure out all the details. I don’t have enough to time to read it all or understand the legalese. I listen to people I trust and assume the enemy hasn’t suddenly converted.

Thanks for asking these questions, and I hope my answers aren’t too rambling, but in today’s world, you can’t take these positions without some fleshing out and context.

Happy Thanksgiving.
Best regards,

Joel Salatin
Polyface Farm

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