I feed my cows…..meat?

It is said that judging teams have specific spots they stop to eat at. Let me confirm the rumors: true. If you’re traveling with Chris Mullinix (Butler Livestock Judging coach) you will infamously stop at a Wendy’s sometime during EVERY trip. Braums and McDonalds are also hot spots to find the Butler vans parked at. During a recent trip to Nebraska for a contest, the Butler freshman discovered an interesting sight while chowing down at Braums:

This sign was posted on the window next to our table!!

Now, as agriculturalists, I’m sure we’ve all seen the hype about “no added hormones” and “no added antibiotics” and, although I don’t agree with their fears, I can certainly understand how that thought scares some Americans. What I don’t understand is “fed all-vegetarian diet” and “raised from birth”. I’m sorry, but I can’t recall the last time I fried some chicken nuggets and threw them in my calves feed bucket!! If you notice, in the bottom right hand corner of the poster it reads: “Our Midwestern U.S. ranchers…….never feed anything but a vegetarian diet. That’s why Braum’s All Natural Beef is so much better”.

Does the American public seriously have fears about farmers and ranchers feeding their cattle meat?? Or is it just another advertising ploy to ensure an un-informed American the meat they are eating lived a “happy life”?? And if that’s not a pleasant thought while you’re eating you’re 546 calorie hamburger, “raised from birth” is. I feel quite certain the high school boy plopping the burger onto the bun in the back never once bottle-fed 150 calves in negative degree weather, or stood outside and held an IV for a sick cow in the mud for an hour while it was pouring down rain, and his sentiment of “raised from birth” is just about as much as a grain of sand.

You bet your crickets I know people who HAVE done that and who DO truly care about their animals, including myself and my family. Of course their “All Natural Beef” is raised from birth. Calves don’t grow from trees and head straight to the feedyard at 850 pounds, they’re born as babies, someone takes care of them and makes sure they’re healthy and treated with basic animal welfare.

Fellow agriculturalists, it is time we take a stand and inform the American public we care. We care about our animals. We care about their well-being. We care if they get sick or injured. We care about what goes onto each and every American’s plate each night at dinner because what they are eating is the same thing we eat too.

I challenge you, agriculturalists, go tell the public! Maybe then, we won’t have to see posters advertising practices we never do, life feeding our cows…….meat.

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4 Comments on “I feed my cows…..meat?”

  1. Hello. It gives me great comfort that you treat your animals with care and want to take a stand, unite together with other cattle farmers and prove this to the world. Unfortunately your kind are few and far between. Most of the meat packing corporations (the four largest ones in the USA to date) do NOT have the same consideration. I would think you of all people would understand this fact. Just wondering why that poster upsets you? Most American’s don’t assume the cattle are fed meat, but that they are fed crap and corn and nothing else natural and organic. “Braums” apparently wants their buyers to believe they are as close to Organic as can be. Hard to believe. Though I’m a skeptic as I’m newly vegetarian.

    • babaraann Says:

      Hello, crap? they are not fed fecies?? And By the way corn is a vegetable and it is an important part of cattle nutrition. They cannot graze all year round. The winter season prevents grazing, and something has to be fed to them for that period of time.

  2. Hello there! First, I would like to answer your question. No, this poster does not truly upset me, but rather is more intriguing than anything to a livestock producer. It is true, many people do think cattle are fed corn and nothing organic and natural, however that is a common misperception. Yes, just like any other American, cattle owners are looking to make profit. But, producers’ livelihoods depend on the well-being and performance of their livestock. To do anything short of providing the best, and most humane care possible would be self-defeating. Producers are sure to balance their animals diet with not only corn, but also other ingredients including hay, grass and vitamins to maintain a healthy animal.
    As far as the packing plant goes, they want to capitalize as much as possible as well. If they were to handle the cattle roughly and without care, the meat quality of the harvested animal would be greatly decreased (and yes, that is a fact). Handling their cattle with care in a stress-free environment and ensuring that they are harvested without pain is not only the humane, legal process, but also the best business decision as well.
    You may find this article of interest, a vegan and dietitian was given access to a large feedlot in Colorado, he reports his findings here:
    I hope that puts your mind at ease 🙂

  3. Chelsea Good Says:

    msjessica1230 – Thank you for seeking out information from people involved in production agriculture about how we raise our animals. There is a lot of misinformation out there. The truth is that America’s ranchers care a lot about their livestock and treat them with the upmost respect, not only because happy, healthy animals are the most productive, but also because it is the right thing to do. Raising livestock is hard work with limited financial rewards. People who chose this lifestyle do it because they truly enjoy being around animals and producing food for Americans and other around the world.

    I want you to know you should feel comfortable eating meat – weather conventional or a niche such as natural or organic – as an ethical part of your diet. However, if you chose not to eat meat, I also respect that decision and hope you will continue to respect the choice of others to continue eating meat.

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