Friday, April 27, 2012

Ethan's Farm and Food Roundup

EthanThe first case of Mad Cow Disease since 2006 was confirmed on Tuesday in California, spawning some serious public worry about the area’s beef and dairy products. The cow’s disease was discovered almost completely by chance in a random testing of dead cows that came through the transfer facility in Hanford, California, and has raised additional concern from the public about our nation’s system for recognizing deadly diseases like Mad Cow Disease.

In an effort to cut down their dependence on foreign markets and satisfy the increased level of meat consumption in the last decade, China is importing millions of live animals to build up its breeding stock, rather than just importing meat. By taking this step, China will move from a conventional backyard farm system to a more modernized and consolidated operations to keep up with the country’s demand.

Burger King has become the first major U.S. fast food chain pledging to move over to cage-free pork and chickens by 2017. The company has decided to make the move based on customer response and also the industry-wide shift towards animal welfare. “It’s proven that consumers are willing to pay a little bit more for fairness, whether it’s to humans or animals,” said food industry analyst Phil Lempert.

The Obama administration released a report on Thursday regarding a “Bioeconomy Blueprint” that would increase funding for biotech research and development in our country in the coming years. Biotech companies praised the administration for the report, saying that it will help reduce restrictions and help reform the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. To read the full “Bioeconomy" report, click here.

A dairy cow from Colorado caught some attention when she wandered from her pen and made her way down to the local McDonald’s drive-thru. Local police located the cow, named Darcy, and she was returned back to the farm shortly after.


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