Posts Tagged ‘beef’

Change the World Wednesday – 3rd April

Running a bit late this morning. Big tropical rainstorm last night lots of rain, lots of lightning and lots of wind. The net went down. for a couple of hours. But that is normal for the Third World, you get used to it.

Stylized waterdrop footprintLast week’s CTWW was about your water footprint.

Boy did I get a surprise.

1848

Initially, I thought it was ho-hum, at least I did until I saw reports of 100+ and 400+.

Then I went, oh dear!

I wasn’t doing so well. My big culprit was food, or more specifically meat.

In Small’s last week’s CTWW gave these figures:

  • Beef 1 kg = 15,500 lt of water
  • Pork = 4,800 lt
  • Chicken = 3,900 lt

Now while that isn’t an end all definitive list, it did show me that the amount of beef that I consume (Oh, I do love a BBQ) was where I unwittingly used most of my ‘hidden’ water.

no-beef4After much gnashing of teeth I thought about what I could do.

The result is that I have imposed on myself two beefless weeks each month. Monday – Sunday, the first full and third weeks  of each month.

I am now in the middle of my first week.

Last night at the supermarket, I bought no beef, only chicken for three days, pork for one day and fish for two days (I already have fish in the fridge for one day). I have bacon to make a bacon & egg pie and ham for snacks.

By doing this I have roughly halved my beef intake.

agreencatEven Lixo P. Cat has joined the the effort.

Not by choice, I might add.

He is having chicken as his meat supplement instead of mincemeat (ground beef for our American cousins), and fish ‘flavoured’ dry cat food that probably doesn’t have any actual fish in it as much as his meat ‘flavoured’ doesn’t not have any actual meat in it.

My Lixo is a ‘green’ cat.

When I unpack from the supermarket, Lixo is a great helper. He carefully inspects each item as it goes into either the cupboard or fridge.

Last night as the last item was hidden from his feline eyes. He looked up at me quizzically and ‘meowed’, and I could just read his mind… “Where’s the beef?”

Onward!

Click for the full post

This week’s CTWW.

This week, apply the three R’s (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle) to CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray Discs, etc.

Once again, it’s rather a large challenge to hop across to Reduce Footprints to read the rest, just click on the banner and you’ll be transported from Kansas…

cd2I am already green here. I haven’t bought a CD for music in years, I download from the net. The same with films, although I do have one or two currently. I have in the past given DVDs to neighbours when I am done with them, so they have been recycled.

I wouldn’t use a CD as a coaster, because coasters need to be absorbent or you drip condensation all down your front.

But I can imagine that they could be used decoratively as dangly things in the wind, like chimeless wind chimes.

As for disposal, Brazil is just not up with this type of specialised recycling and if they were added to the ‘plastics’ would no doubt be discarded at the recycling plant. Anyway, in our area we don’t have selective recycling for anything.

You do see this in 'posh' areas, but Zona Oeste (West Zone) is not 'posh' enough

You do see this in ‘posh’ areas, but Zona Oeste (West Zone) is not ‘posh’ enough

Our recycling is more like this…

Catadores roaming the streets looking for stuff to sell on

Catadores roaming the streets looking for stuff to sell on

That’s about it for this week, on with my beefless week… Chicken for lunch!

Make you Fink Good this Friday

If you buy your beef from big corporate supermarkets like Tesco, the chances are you helping to destroy the Amazon rainforest.

Tesco supplier accused of contributing to Amazon rainforest destruction

Greenpeace says meat products supplied by Brazilian firm JBS come from ranches in illegally deforested lands

Cattle at an illegal settlement in northern Brazil: such ranches are the leading source of rainforest destruction in the Amazon. Photograph: Antonio Scorza/AFP/Getty Images

British consumers are unwittingly contributing to the devastation of the Amazon rainforest by buying meat products from Tesco, according to Greenpeace.

The environmental group says in a report that canned beef from the supermarket chain has been found to contain meat from ranches that have been carved out of the lands of indigenous peoples, and farms the Brazilian government believes have been sited in illegally deforested lands.

The allegations stem from an 18-month investigation carried out by Greenpeace into the practices of JBS, a big Brazilian supplier of meat and cattle byproducts. The campaigning group claims it unearthed evidence of serious violations of the company’s own ethical code, and those of companies it supplies, including Tesco.

Read more

Read more

This has been known since this June 2009 article:

Supermarket suppliers ‘helping destroy Amazon rainforest’

• Meat companies sued over Amazon deforestation
• Accused firms supplying Tesco, Asda and M&S

Brazilian authorities investigating illegal deforestation have accused the suppliers of several UK supermarkets of selling meat linked to massive destruction of the Amazon rainforest. Brazilian firms that supply Tesco, Asda and Marks & Spencer are among dozens of companies named by prosecutors, who are seeking hundreds of millions of pounds in compensation.

Read more

Read more

So it’s not new news.

This week in Brazil steps were taken by the Brazilian Association of Supermarkets to help rectify the domestic use of such meat…

Brazil supermarkets ‘to avoid Amazon meat’

Farmers use fire to clear land for cattle, destroying huge swathes of rainforest in the Amazon region.

The main group representing supermarkets in Brazil says it will no longer sell meat from cattle raised in the rainforest.

The Brazilian Association of Supermarkets, which has 2,800 members, hopes the deal will cut down on the illegal use of rainforest for pasture.

Deforestation in the Amazon has slowed over the past years but invasion of public land continues to be a problem.

Huge swathes have been turned into land for pasture and soy plantations.

The Brazilian Association of Supermarkets (Abras) signed the agreement with the Federal Public Prosecutor’s office in the capital, Brasilia.

‘More transparent’

Public Prosecutor Daniel Cesar Azeredo Avelino said consumers would benefit from the deal.

“The agreement foresees a series of specific actions to inform the consumer about the origin of the meat both through the internet and at the supermarkets,” he said.

Mr Avelino said a more transparent labelling system would also make it easier for consumers to avoid buying meat from the Amazon and make it harder for shops to sell items from producers who flouted the law.

He said he would now work towards reaching a similar deal with smaller shops.

Under the deal, supermarkets have promised to reject meat from areas of the Amazon where illegal activities take place, such as illegal logging and invasion of public land, Mr Avelino said.

There is currently no deadline for the implementation of the measures, but Mr Avelino said they would be adopted “soon”.

According to the pressure group Greenpeace, expansion of the cattle industry in the Amazon is the single biggest cause of deforestation in the region.

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If Brazilians can take appropriate measures, the big corporate supermarkets across the globe can do the same.

And, you, the consumer, can also play your part and demand to know the origin of your beef.

Do this, and you will be doing your part.

 

 

Change the World Wednesday – 27th

Looks a bit grotty

Looks a bit grotty

My treasures, both of them.

In the foreground is Lixo P. Cat examining my recently acquired ‘table top’.

Looks a bit grotty at the moment (the drum top, not the cat) but I have great hopes that it will clean up well; then I have to find ‘legs’ strong enough to support it because it’s heavy.

Now all I have to do is overcome the inertia of procrastination. It has to dry first, that’s not a justification… It has been out in the rain. The white stuff is mould that has appeared as it dries. Updates as the work progresses.

Click for full post

On with this week’s CTWW.

I can’t complain about the difficulty of this one, because it comes about from an article that I pointed Small at some time ago.

“the water we use “behind the scenes” … the water it takes to grow our food, produce our stuff, etc. We’ve done challenges to reduce our direct water use … let’s dig a bit deeper, shall we?” – blurb by Small.

This week, consider your water footprint, particularly your indirect water use.

There’s actually quite a bit more, so click on the CTWW banner above to read the rest.

This is an interesting challenge because it looks at the water we use that we don’t see.

Okay, I have done the Extended Calculator suggested by Small, here’s the result:

waterfootprint

My annual water footprint is 1848 cubic metres per year.

beef-pork-and-poultry-daniel-eskridge

Beef, pork and poultry by Daniel Eskridge

Remember, I am living alone with Lixo P. Cat.

Clearly my biggest enemy is meat; two thirds of my water footprint.

I can change my habits here and eat more pork and chicken which have a smaller water footprint than beef and I can eat more fish.

.

Bloggers turn coffee into great blog posts

Bloggers turn coffee into great blog posts

I am loathe to swap coffee for tea. While I like tea, I need coffee to write quality blog posts, tea just doesn’t cut the mustard there.

.

How does this compare with your calculations? I would be interested to see, leave a comment with a link for me to visit.

Update:

Since I wrote this post I posted on Life is but a Labyrinth and it includes some watery details, that may entertain/surprise/shock you.

Satireday on Eco-Crap

wpid-HORSEMEAT_AAF2

Horsemeat and Codswallop

Finduslasagneigh

One amongst many tainted brands

The current horsemeat scandal does not surprise me.

It was inevitable.

A number of factors caused it, principally the need for cheaper meat and those willing to subvert the law to provide it. The EU (European Union) and it’s method of supplying products freely over borders. Governments cutting costs with less health inspectors and monitoring. The decline in local butcher’s shops in favour of the corporate level supermarket.

We need to buy frozen meals at the supermarket

We need to buy frozen meals at the supermarket

Lastly, and probably the biggest factor, our need to have meals prepared and frozen…

…because we are to damned lazy to cook at home!

Largely, we ourselves are to blame.

I have touted, for a long time, the need to return to the old ways. This is a prime example of why.

The governments have regulated that you can only buy meat from corporate slaughter houses and abattoirs. Another case of the ‘milk’ story, it’s because of your health.

Codswallop!

It’s because of corporate wealth!

For centuries we have grown our own animals for consumption and survived; and now the government comes along and says you can’t.

I know that because most of live in cities, it’s impractical to raise big beasts for the household, but we can seriously look at supporting our local butcher. Most are pretty reputable types, those that aren’t soon lose their custom.

telegraph-front-page-horse-meat-in-burgers

We have been eating horsemeat for years. There is nothing wrong with horsemeat. The problem is that horses can/may have been treated with phenylbutazone. Therein lies the problem.

“In the United States and United Kingdom, it is no longer approved for human use, as it can cause severe adverse effects such as suppression of white blood cell production and aplastic anemia.”Wikipedia

If horses were raised for human consumption, then they would not be treated and the meat itself perfectly okay, apart from peoples’ aversion to eating such a ‘noble’ animal.

We eat almost anything else, but suddenly the world starts gagging collectively over horsemeat.

We call meat from cattle beef, sheep meat is called mutton, pig is pork, deer is venison; if only we had a fancy name for horse, would it be more acceptable? Perhaps if we used the French, viande de chevaline, there’s a nice name, it would lessen the stigma.

viande chevaline

Philosoraptor

 

Philosoraptor takes everyday thoughts and puts a slightly different twist to them, if you like the idea, then visit my blog They Say it’s in the Genes each Philosoraptor Phriday for a slightly twisted view of the world.

Monday Moaning

Preamble: I know this one will upset the veges and vegans, but that’s not the purpose. The reason behind this post is the incredible waste of food in a world that is crying food shortages.

British veal poised for an ‘ethical’ comeback

TV chef Jimmy Doherty at his farm in Suffolk.  Photograph: Nick Sinclair/Alamy

TV farmer Jimmy Doherty promotes revival of rose veal to prevent ‘useless’ male dairy calves being shot at birth

As far as reputation goes, it’s up there with foie gras and shark’s fin. But a decade after furious protests on the streets of Britain brought a ban on both the controversial live export of calves and on the rearing-in-crates system – veal is back.

British rose veal has already won the ethical stamp of approval from the RSPCA and Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) but it remains a niche market in the UK, just 0.1% of the meat we consume each year.

Now TV farmer Jimmy Doherty, as part of a new series starting on Channel 4 this week, has persuaded Tesco to start stocking the veal in the hope that it will catch on with British meat-eaters.

Doherty and other campaigners claim that persuading British consumers to start eating rose veal – so called because the meat is pink instead of the traditional milk-fed white veal – will go some way to address the “hidden scandal” of our love of milk that sees an estimated 100,000 to 150,000 male dairy calves shot within hours of birth.

Dairy cows are kept constantly pregnant to feed our milk and cheese habit but while female calves can go on to replace their mothers in the dairy system, there is no market for the male calves of dairy breeds which aren’t considered good for beef.

“Rose veal can offer an alternative,” said Doherty. “Crates and all that stuff have given veal a bad name but things are very different now. And it’s not about eating day-old baby cows – if you think that we slaughter chickens when they are 42 days old, lamb at five to six months, and pigs at five months – then at six to eight months, rose veal is the oldest of the lot. No one talks about that side of things.

“Dairy calves are being shot at 24 to 48 hours old and if we drink milk we all have to share in this instead of leaving the burden of it to the farmers. Eating rose veal is utilising those calves and solving a problem,” said Doherty, who is raising veal calves on his own farm.

“The veal being produced in Europe and imported into the UK isn’t meeting anything like our welfare standards. The calves have restricted milk diets to keep the meat white. Our rose veal is slightly pink and has a lovely, lovely flavour and it’s full of protein. I’d love to see more people eating it. It’s not the cheapest so for a lot of people it would have to be a once-a-week special. Tesco has been selling imported German veal so I’m really pleased they are looking at stocking British rose veal.

“It’s time to grow up and face our responsibilities: this is just younger beef.”

Source: The Guardian Read more

Opinion:

Rose Veal Steaks, just smaller

100,000 – 150,000 animals destroyed because they have no purpose; and that’s only in the United Kingdom. When you add the rest of the world into the equation that is a tremendous loss/waste of food.

Admittedly in the past the raising of this product was abhorrent, enough to create a political furore.

However, times have changed, and so have the methods; at least in the UK, although some European countries do not adhere to the same standards. They need to be brought into line.

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