Tag Archives: Livestock

U.S. drought triggers “cowmageddon”

American farmers who can’t afford to feed their animals because of drought related crop failures, are sending them to the slaughterhouse in record numbers.


Filed under News

Genetic research and livestock origins

From The Pig Site.com

“GLOBAL – Modern cattle are descended from a small herd domesticated in the Middle East about 10,500 years ago, according to recent genetics research.

Researchers extracted DNA from domestic cattle bones found at archeological sites. By examining the DNA of ancient and modern cattle, they traced taurine cattle to about 80 female aurochs. Taurine cattle include beef breeds like Herefords and Angus, and dairy breeds like Holsteins.

The study, published in the Journal of Molecular Biology and Evolution, states that the low number of domesticated aurochs indicates “initial domestication took place in a restricted area and suggests the process was constrained by the difficulty of sustained managing and breeding of the wild progenitors of domestic cattle.”  Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under News

U.S. farmers free to drug livestock with no FDA oversight — The Guardian UK

From Karen McVeigh in The Guardian U.K.:

“Environmental and consumer groups have condemned the US Food and Drug Administration’s move to renege on its long-held policy to regulate the use of human antibiotics in animal feed.

Last week, the agency quietly announced it was withdrawing its plan to limit the use of antibiotics fed to healthy livestock intended for human consumption.

Critics say the U-turn, which comes amid the FDA’s own stated concerns over food safety, is at odds with its obligations to protect the public. Continue reading


Filed under News

“When Food Kills” — we wonder why…

From Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times:

“The deaths of 31 people in Europe from a little-known strain of E. coli have raised alarms worldwide, but we shouldn’t be surprised. Our food often betrays us.

Just a few days ago, a 2-year-old girl in Dryden, Va., died in a hospital after suffering bloody diarrhea linked to another strain of E. coli. Her brother was also hospitalized but survived.

Every year in the United States,325,000 people are hospitalized because of food-borne illnesses and 5,000 die, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s right: food kills one person every two hours. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under News

Backyard Chicken-keeping in Toronto

From “Update on Toronto Chicken Law” blog:

There is finally a feeling of optimism among chicken-keepers and chicken-supporters on the issue of legalizing backyard hens in the City of Toronto.

It is important to understand how the process of changing a bylaw works, and thus the chart. Right now the chicken file is in the Policy Development phase. The next step is a written report. Once the report is written, it will go to one of the Committees, likely the Licensing and Standards Committee. The Committee can then recommend, amend or reject the proposal (50% vote in favour is required). Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under News

The end of our farm [the TLC Ranch]

Rebecca and Jim, of the TLC Ranch, in California, on why they’re throwing in the towel:

Rebecca. Photo via hers and Jim's "Honest Meat" blog

“It was already too late for my family farm when I threw out that challenge for you all to put your money where you mouth is and support a radical transformation of the food system (So You Say You Want A Food Revolution?).  We decided back in August after a particularly stressful morning discussion on where we might be able to find land to rent that we simply could not do this anymore. After six years of pushing a boulder uphill, trailblazing pastured production before it became so well known, farming without money or family land, in one of the most expensive areas of the country, we are throwing in the farming towel. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under News