Tag Archives: Tyson

Activism Green Living Healthy Living Kids & Family Real Food Toxin Alert!

Take Action Now – Oppose Fake "Food Safety" Bill S3767

www.mypicshares.com

Who’s the picture of the elderly gentleman to the right? Why, that’s Senator Patrick Leahy, Democrat, Vermont. What does he have to do with health freedoms? Keep reading.

Foodborne illness has become quite a ubiquitous event – and people are so used to it happening, they scarcely think twice about the repercussions.

But did you know that 1 in 4 people in this country are stricken annually with some type of foodborne illness?

When I was in my twenties, I contracted a foodborne illness on an average of once a year for 10 years. Yes, I had food poisoning every year for 10 years, some years multiple times. It was during this time that I was eating a lot of processed and fast-food meals. This is not normal and shouldn’t be acceptable to the consumer public!

Five years ago when I decided enough was enough and I would change my eating habits, my health started to turn around. And guess what? I haven’t had an episode of food borne illness since then.

Listen up.

Food recalls could be the end of real food as we know it.

It’s time to communicate to your senator and representative that enough is enough. Food recalls should be waking people up to the practices going on in the facilities where food is grown and being produced. But instead, it’s causing the opposite effect – the government wants to add more safety and regulatory laws onto the already dense pile already in place. This “solution” is not going to make these problems disappear.

Just before the egg recall (July 2010), significant “changes” in the law were made to “make egg production safer”.  This effort started over 10 years ago, but it took nearly a decade to get it done. Funny how the law went into effect and then the recall occurred anyway. Doesn’t this say something about the regulations in the first place – that it’s not the laws, it’s the farming practices?

When are the food safety regulatory bunch going to wake up and get it through their heads? The answer is the entire system is geared toward supporting and growing profits for commodity agriculture. Cargill. Swift. Tyson. Smithfield. And all others of their ilk that control the food system. Those few corporations control over 90 percent of the food people in America eat – including the facility in Iowa that got hand-slapped for the egg recall.  The authorities won’t stop. There’s too much profit at stake.

So it’s up to the citizens of this country to defend and protect and fight for our food safety by demanding bills like S3767 get taken down, and to be sure of a future for small, sustainable farmers who care about delivering a healthy, safe, and nutritious product to their customers. If you think the folks at Cargill and Tyson are looking out for you and your health, think again. They only apologize when they get caught. And when they do, they have enough power and money to absorb the damages of a food recall in the food system. Just because you eat the food and don’t get sick immediately, by the way, doesn’t mean the food is safe OR healthy to consume.

Bill S510, The Food Safety Modernization Act, which has been in process since 2009. This bill has been passed in the House, and now sitting in the Senate has been delayed.

From Health Freedom USA:

Now there is a new bill. “The Senate Judiciary Committee is planning to debate – and approve – S.3767 as early as tomorrow, September 23, 2010. It is entirely likely that while moving this bill forward, the text of dangerous, Codex-friendly S.510 will be introduced into that bill as an amendment; perhaps even elements of the long-discredited fake dietary supplement “safety” bill, S.3002 might worm their way in. Right now, to the tooth gnashing frustration of the Uber Cartel, S.510 has been stalled by Senator Coburn’s courageous hold on it. Please take a moment to tip your hat to Dr. Coburn and honor him for character unbecoming a politician: courage, the ability to act for the common good and willingness to buck the tide for what is clearly right. (Action Item No. 3 above.) Men and women of principle need to know that we know what they are doing and what they are facing for doing it!”

Remember Senator Patrick Leahy? He is the chief sponsor of this bill, as well as a number of other measures related to improving our “food safety”. According to his web site:

“As a senior member of the Agriculture Committee, Senator Leahy played instrumental roles in creating the Farmland Protection Program and the Milk Income Loss Compensation (MILC) program, and in extending the Conservation Reserve Program. He has been a long-time supporter of the organic movement and is often called the “father of organics.” He helped Vermont’s and the nation’s organic industry grow from near obscurity when he wrote and passed the Organic Foods Production Act in 1990. The Leahy charter for organic agriculture has helped it grow into an $11 billion-a-year sector of the American economy.”

Funny thing is, the “father of agriculture” as he is called, he doesn’t really seem to be trying to support the small-scale farmers at all. And notice how he is a senior member of the Agriculture Committee. You can bet he’s in close, personal contact with board members and CEOs of corporations like Cargill, Swift, Smithfield, Tyson. Starting to see a connection now?

The web site goes on to say:

“Senator Leahy has championed effective child nutrition programs, gaining bipartisan support for addressing the nation’s obesity crisis and leading efforts to implement hands-on nutrition education programs in our schools. He has also reached across the aisle to coauthor legislation that would enable the Secretary of Agriculture to more efficiently control the sale of junk food and soft drinks in schools that participate in the federal School Lunch Program.”

Right, Senator. You’ve worked really hard to improve school lunch programs and nutritional standards for the nation. That’s why obesity, heart disease, and diabetes are three of the most pervasive diseases we face. And somehow, obesity rates have continued to skyrocket since 1989. Why is that?

What the bill proposes:

Provisions of the bill increase criminal penalties of imprisonment of up to to ten years for anyone who “knowingly introduces or delivers for introduction into interstate commerce any food that is adulterated or misbranded”. So if you are a farmer who didn’t pay attention to miniscule record keeping data error or a manufacturer selling a dietary supplement with a label reading about the product’s ability to prevent or treat illness or disease, you’d better believe the FDA would step in and declare these actions eligible for criminal charges.

The purpose of these bills are intended to make it more difficult for safety violators to commit crimes and thus make our food system more “safe”, but it provides license to federal entities like the FDA omnipotent authority to rule over any case and to threaten, silence, penalize and imprison small-scale farmers, natural food and supplement makers and distributors. It’s happening right now in Europe.

Regulations like this would require all producers – from the corporate giants to the small-scale farmers to local cooperative clubs and groups to natural and organic food growers – to adhere to these new guidelines. And the ones who won’t be able to meet those requirements will go under – small, family farms and food producing operations and distributors. This legislation would effectively destroy income and way of life for these growers and producers, as well as adversely affect the consumer purchaser of natural, healthy food and dietary supplements.

Take action to preserve our health freedoms and rights!

Please take a moment TODAY and go to the National Health Freedom ACTION site and oppose this bill. Then contact your local senators and representatives by phone or mail and let them know you vehemently oppose more food safety regulations, and that the way to clean up this mess is to support local and sustainable agriculture and growers who practice clean and safe farming practices.

Wednesday, September 23rd is the deadline for this bill to remain on the Senate floor. Take action today and make a difference for our future!

Activism Green Living Healthy Living Real Food Toxin Alert!

The Egg Recall and Why Local Isn't Necessarily Better

www.mypicshares.com

I’ve already written about food recalls a number of times, but the point about finding sustainable food is one that I find must be revisited often…because there are so many misconceptions going around about why simply avoiding one brand over another is not enough.

And I’ll also tell you why it’s really important to know your farmer and what practices he or she uses to raise the chickens that lay the eggs you are going to eat.

Read the conversation that convinced me to write this post:

Last week, someone in my family (who shall go nameless to keep the peace, and he never reads my blog anyway) called and asked me about eggs. He wanted to know where I buy my eggs. I replied that I buy them from the Capital City Public Market (in downtown Boise, ID) farmer’s market from a farmer from Payette, ID (it’s about 60 miles away from where I live in Boise). The farm is Matthew’s All Natural Meats.

Then he asked about another egg supplier, a company that’s been around since I was a child, or maybe longer. I have a distinct recollection of going there and seeing closed-in hen houses where the chickens were confined, and the odor I noticed from this business when I got out of the car was definitely strong of excrement. I replied that I wouldn’t buy my eggs there, and I asked him if he wanted to know why.

His reply: “no, this place is local and that’s good enough for me and my wife.”

To clarify, I asked, “so you don’t care if the chickens at this local hatchery are raised in the same way as the ones in the recall?”

“No.” He said.

So while it’s true: all these eggs are sourced back to Iowa farms Wright County Egg and from Hillandale Farms, owned by Austin DeCoster (who is, by the way, a known offender of safety and environmental regulations), you might be thinking:

“But I don’t live anywhere near Iowa, and the eggs I buy are from another source entirely. How could I get sick from eating those eggs?”

Just because you are buying eggs from some other supplier that wasn’t mentioned on the recall list or even buying foods locally, it does not mean you are going to be assured of a safe, healthy product that won’t make you sick.

Those eggs from the recent recall were recalled because of the farming practices used on those chicken farms – chickens crammed together in close quarters, pooping all over each other, getting diseases and being administered antibiotics, feed  covered in chemicals and pesticides (and from genetically-modified sources). That’s where salmonella contamination comes from. Those birds are not allowed to roam around out in the open and eat bugs, worms, and have access to the outdoors and sunshine.

Buying eggs from farmers who raise their chickens sustainably will guarantee you will not have eggs from diseased and sick birds. It’s always a good idea to know the farmer or call him or her at the very least, and ask about the practices they use.

What does sustainable really mean?

Are the birds out in the open, on grass, eating bugs and dirt, and being exposed to sunshine? That’s what chickens are supposed to do, by the way. It’s what nature intended. Are the chickens free from antibiotics, chemicals, and other toxic substances? Chances are, a smaller operation and farm will be much more likely to care about the relationships they have with customers and to make sure their birds are raised in healthy and sanitary conditions. Most small-time operations have a reputation to protect, and they are not going to put it on the line by not keeping their practices clean. Plus, many of those small farmers believe in the principles of animal and bird stewardship and want to produce a healthy and sustainable product.

And you might pay more for a dozen eggs from a local, sustainable farm. But compare that to the cost of getting sick from salmonella and having to miss work or school, and a trip to the E.R. It’s also the case that eggs from healthy hens on pasture have more nutrients in them because unlike their conventional counterparts, healthy birds on pasture and out in the open are exposed to the sunshine and outdoors (think Vitamin A, D, E, and K), a better balance of Omega 3s to 6s, and up to five times the amount of conjugated linoleic acid – a known antioxidant and nutrient important for many aspects of health including the cardiovascular system. Now that makes financial sense.

There is something else you need to be aware of: the media, food safety officials, nor mainstream health or medical sources will never tell you this information because to do so would compromise the safety regulations and laws that are already in place, and it would uncover a vast number of other farms guilty of the same violations. That would make government entities and businesses look bad. It might also, just maybe, alert the public to what’s been going on in the food industry for decades and decades, start a revolt, and cause those companies to have to change their practices or be shut down. But then again, I think I might just be living in a dream world.

Those companies are huge, profitable, and POWERFUL. They’ll stop at nothing to maintain that status, and everyone in those industries and government positions knows each other, works together, and protects each other. Is it starting to make sense now as to why these operations are allowed to continue on their merry way of selling toxic food and food products to the public? Most of the time, those companies get a slap on the hand at the very worst – a fine, or something of that nature, which is easily absorbed by a big corporation.

And the safety standards? Well, it might be interesting to know that those farms who produced the recalled eggs were only required to adhere to them on a “voluntary” basis. So much for following “the law”.  And guess what? Most of the eggs on the market come from premises like these. So even though the carton your eggs come in might say, “cage-free” or “all-natural”, those eggs are still likely from unhealthy chickens in confinement. Marketing terms and lingo are very tricky that way, and lead consumers to believe they are getting something good, when in fact, they probably are not.

The same goes for any food item on a recall list. More and more you will see these recalls happening, and more and more it is going to be critical for consumers to be aware of why these foods are being recalled…despite food safety regulation laws, despite government laws being stepped up and protocols becoming more strict. Creating more laws and stricter regulations simply won’t prevent what has been occurring from occurring again in the future.

Consumer and farmer habits can change the future

The only thing that will change this onslaught of low-quality foods being mass produced and continuing to be recalled is awareness and activism on the part of farmers and consumers to produce sustainable foods and to buy them and support only those farmers and food growers adhering to those strict standards. It may sound strange or even impossible, but it’s the whole truth. If you think most food recalls aren’t from industrial and conventional sources, just look up any food recall and see where it’s sourced. If nothing else, that alone should convince you.

Here are just a few of the recalls in the recent past (and note, ALL sources are conventional and industrial):

Although not all of these companies are as large as companies like Tyson and Cargill (note, both of these companies are included in these recall articles), they all have something in commonindustrial farming practices are used in growing their food. And therein lies the problem.

So, please, please, please, don’t just keep buying the same foods (Heaven forbid!), or go over to some other brand that you know nothing about. Because chances are, you’ll just end up buying another carton of eggs, or another package of meat, or another bag of produce from a conventional source where the food is produced or raised in a similar way to the Iowa farm eggs – in closed in hen houses and in the most filthy, abominable conditions possible. In the case of produce, most of these foods are being contaminated by run-off water and other similar situations from factory farms where E.coli or salmonella are an issue (again, confinement facilities for animals) .Make it a point to learn about where your food comes from, know your farmer, and by all means, do support local – just make sure it’s sustainable.

More reasons to buy sustainable?

Is cheap food really cheap? The hidden costs of industrial food

Fortified and processed foods: are label claims about nutrition true?

Huge FDA recall of 10,000 products – another wakeup call to avoid processed foods!