Monday, February 18, 2008

Recalled Beef - 143 million pounds

On Sunday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture recalled 143 million pounds of beef from the California slaughterhouse, Westland/Hallmark Meat Co. This was the largest beef recall in history. The slaughterhouse provides meat to school lunch programs and since the recall dates back to February 1, most of the meat has probably already been eaten. According to the AP story, the meat came from animals that were non-ambulatory or "downer" cows which are normally kept out of the food supply because they are more likely to be sick and therefore pose a higher risk of contaminating our food supply with bacteria like E. coli and salmonella. An undercover Humane Society video shows that the animals were shoved with forklifts, kicked, shocked, and had water forced down their throats. What is most disturbing is that I am not so sure that this was a one-time occurrence. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that such abuse is a normal part of slaughterhouse life. This is one of the reasons why I avoid meat that has been raised and processed conventionally. I just never know. And when I do, I feel sick and sad.

Caroline's Lunchbox Menu, February 19: Breakfast - 100% whole grain toast, apple butter, pearsauce; Lunch - mac n' cheese, mixed vegetables (frozen, Cascadian Farms), grapefruit; Snacks - sweet potatoes

Childcare Center Menu, February 19: Breakfast - applesauce, wheat bagels, cream cheese; Lunch - tuna and noodles, mixed vegetables, kiwi; Snacks - baked potatoes with cheese

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