I promised an opinion piece soon and it didn’t take long for something to catch my eye.
A dairy cow in California was found to have mad cow disease. The USDA ensures it was not slaughtered for human consumption and that BSE (mad cow) is not transferred in milk so the US public and food supply is safe. Furthermore, this form of BSE is atypical and not associated with the strain linked to the consumption of infected beef through cattle feed.
Well I feel better. At least this type is atypical, meaning we don’t know much about it. And at least the cow itself didn’t end up as beef in our food system, only it’s milk is out there for us to consume. Thanks Big Ag.
Seriously, if this form is atypical and the USDA is having to send samples to international agencies to be confirmed that’s not a good sign. And the typical strain is associated with infected beef being put back in the feed and then eaten by other cattle. This practice was put to a stop but now we have what the USDA calls “a very rare form of the disease” popping up. How? How is this strain transmitted and how do we know it won’t be carried in the cow’s milk?
Even if there was no way for the disease to be transmitted in milk from infected cattle, consider the conditions factory dairy cows are in. They endure more milking than their utters were meant to withstand and there have been reports of blood and tissue ending up in the milk supply. So how can we know whether the disease entered our food supply via this route? We can’t.
News like this just makes me happy I can opt out. I’m fortunate to have a local dairy right here in Delta Junction. And for anyone out there who doesn’t have a local dairy, there are other alternatives. Don’t be fooled though, the USDA organic label doesn’t ensure safety from factory farm problems. Some organic dairy farms are run in the same fashion as nonorganic just different feed. Almond milk may seem nice but almonds are highly pesticide ridden so in this case, look for the organic label. Soy is controversial, educate yourself on its estrogenic effects and make your own decision. My personal preference is to pass. My favorite choice of them all is coconut milk. It has not been infected by GMO technology and there are brands that are organic to avoid pesticides.
What are your thoughts on this discovery? How else do you opt out of the Big Ag food system and supply in the US and why?