Sweet times for cows as gummy worms replace costly corn feed

Comments (15)
leadfooted wrote:

Here’s a crazy idea. How about we restore cows to eating what nature intended, grass? And since the great plains is largely a corn field, why not give homeowners and landscapers a tiny tax break to collect their clippings and offer them to the feed market? Monsanto and Cargill be damned.

Sep 23, 2012 8:42am EDT  --  Report as abuse
monkey.ears wrote:

This is a very sad commentary on how farmers really don’t care about what’s best for the animals. It is also only part of the story since the public has been aware for quite a while that agriculture business often feeds blood and other animal remains back to these poor unsuspecting creatures. The only important thing to these farmers is the bottom line – not animal welfare. Humans have no physical need for meat. When a cow (or other creature) is slaughtered all that is usable (out of the tens of thousands of pounds of food that was fed to it over its abbreviated and miserable life is a small fraction of the amount of food (grain) that could have been fed directly to the hungry people of the world. We have the power to combat world hunger just by NOT eating meat. Skip the middle man, go veg, and you’ll be helping the animals, the environment, your own health, and world hunger.

Sep 23, 2012 8:42am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jeff81201 wrote:

Dead on leadfoot! Why we are burning oil to plow fields and laying fertilizer and using pesticide to grow feed for cows when we could just let the grass grow and then make even healthier meat the natural way is ridiculous.

Corn / trash fed beef is not as good as grass fed.

Sep 23, 2012 11:26am EDT  --  Report as abuse
neahkahnie wrote:

I notice that there is no let-up in the rules for ethanol from corn thanks to the efforts of the Argi-Business corporations and the farmers. That’s 40% of our corn.

Sep 23, 2012 12:37pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
chyron wrote:

Looks like some of people in comments never gave a thought of food industry economics. Free ranging/ranching or pasturing is costlier than using land to grow crops then feed them to animals.Or that transportation of grain is much simplier that that of meat. Not to mention that in winter seasons grass productivity falls.

And about “people don’t need meat” – every vegetarian i knew uses either not as common and relatively prisy products like various nuts or non-common fruits and veggies for their diet or downright use “food supplements”. I’m not sure that production of these even can be cranked high enough to support all worlds population suddenly going vegetarian.
BTW our closest relatives – chimpanzee – is actively hunting omnivore. Of all primates only gorillas are vegetarians, but this puts huge limits to their activities – while all others do regularly eat meat/fish/insects/worms. And gorillas branched off from our common ancestors several millions years earlier than chimpanzee.

Though large animal meat can be partially replaced by worms and insects, which are good and potentially cost-efficient source of proteins, or in more sci-fi’sh way meat could be vat-grown (which is of now not yet cost-effective).

Another solution can be hunting of repopulated animals in now barren areas of northern regions – so far experiment to up bioproductivity of tundra in Yakutia’s “Pleistocene Park” is very promising, and most fine thing about it is that it’s essentially recreation of regions ecology before mankind (which was much more productive than current landscape and without overhunting which led to europe-wide catastrophe ten millenias ago, hunters/foresters will play roles of apex predators and thought-to-be-esential tree-destroying mammoths – not sure that elephants can be acclimatized there). But this is best-case, responsive and really LONG term solution.

Sep 23, 2012 12:50pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JeffreyV wrote:

I’m not really sure what Chyron’s talking about, but the only solution I see is a return to small local farming. The capitalism model doesn’t work for food, unless we have the experts (government) watching quality for us. Unfortunately, companies like Monsanto now control government!

Sep 23, 2012 4:16pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JamVee wrote:

The high cost of Corn, is partly a result of it’s being used to make bio-fuels for our cars and trucks. Years ago, we were warned by experts that corn was not a good “bio-fuel” source, but the corn grower’s, high paid lobby, and our, less than brilliant lawmakers knew better.

More tragic than the high cost of feeding US cows, is the 3rd world people who are starving because of such selfish and short sighted moves.

Brazil, probably the world’s leader in bio fuels, uses sugar cane, without impacting the world’s subsistence food prices. But we were too smart to follow their lead. After all, those folks had been doing it for 20 years before the US even woke up to the possibilities.

Sep 23, 2012 4:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
neahkahnie wrote:

@leadfooted: Grass take water just like corn. No water for corn. What water is there for grass? The reason that so many ranchers in Texas are buying what corn they can is that they can’t get the water or it’s too expensive to spend on grass for cattle, let alone have something for them to drink. Rachers, both meat and dairy depend on corn, especially during the winter when cattle can’t graze because of snow or rain. Dairy ranchers in Western Oregon are growing more corn than ever. It looks like Iowa or Illinois here on the coast. The cattle can’t graze out of doors during the period from October through March or April. They must be “grained” like horses.

Sep 23, 2012 7:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
neahkahnie wrote:

@leadfooted: Grass take water just like corn. No water for corn. What water is there for grass? The reason that so many ranchers in Texas are buying what corn they can is that they can’t get the water or it’s too expensive to spend on grass for cattle, let alone have something for them to drink. Rachers, both meat and dairy depend on corn, especially during the winter when cattle can’t graze because of snow or rain. Dairy ranchers in Western Oregon are growing more corn than ever. It looks like Iowa or Illinois here on the coast. The cattle can’t graze out of doors during the period from October through March or April. They must be “grained” like horses.

Sep 23, 2012 7:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
neahkahnie wrote:

The irony of ethanol is that: 1) it’s not a efficient in internal combustion engines; 2)It can’t be shipped by pipeline so it must be transported by truck which burns diesel fuel which pollutes the air to bring motorists ethanol which raises the price of fuel so we can have cleaner air (which we don’t have). Look at the makers of ethanol for blame as well as the farmers who won’t grow corn for feed.

Sep 23, 2012 7:25pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
neahkahnie wrote:

About ethanol again: Also blame the Congress for buying into this, especially in the “corn” states so they can keep their cushy jobs in D.C. representing the big corporations, not You and I.

Sep 23, 2012 7:26pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
gator5909 wrote:

Someone correct me but if a cow is given all these alternatives and not an ideal diet, wont their calves be deformed and fell to thrive. We are seeing right now a large group of cattle that were fed mint clippings left over from the mint processing of the plant rather than the ideal diet. These cows were given this diet and the calves-almost all of them- are dying, have growths, deformities and have a failure to thrive.

Sep 24, 2012 2:53pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
bonappetitmme wrote:

This is crazy. And we are just as crazy if we buy this meat! If we create a market, they will produce it. Buy organic or better yet, grass fed meat only.

Sep 26, 2012 9:41am EDT  --  Report as abuse
dustmite wrote:

Wasn’t there a law passed that banned feeding animal byproducts to cattle? Gummy worms and marshmallows commonly contain gelatin which is made from animal(often bovine) byproducts, and I remember products being recalled specifically for tainted gelatin during the mad cow scare.

Sep 27, 2012 10:59am EDT  --  Report as abuse
tjh1959 wrote:

Really? How is this affecting people who eat it. Sugar and fat do not seem like the best products to feed any animal. I get the price of feed is high but isn’t that the risk of farming or ranching? Seems feeding this junk to cattle that will be consumed by humans is a higher price to pay all down the line in health.

Sep 29, 2012 5:56am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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