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Old 02-18-2013, 01:42 PM   #21
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I don't have the vapors over health threats from food, although I eat very little processed. It's just that we've forgotten or never known what a lot of foods really taste like. You know, the best beef mean I ever had was down on the border on a state ranch park. They let a few head of longhorn steers run loose to get by on what they can find. This place, early in the 1800's, had lots of native grasses. The succession of cattle, goats, and sheep did away with the grasses. The steers manage on everything that's left, most of it heavily thorned. But that's what classic longhorns are good at.

On one trip, they had killed a steer and barbecued it. Meaning killed suddenly, with minimum stress, out in the open, and dropped onto a tarp to be butchered as Mexican hands always butchered them, without hanging and bleeding. (Nothing kosher there.) The more blood in the meat, the unmodified longhorn traits, and the colorful diet combined (along with an expert cook) to make beef that was as tender as any I've had and full of flavor, not wild but rich.

I think if most people could taste beef like that, they would get mad when served what comes to the grocery shelves.

I don't get over-excited about "organic" (meaning the certified qualification). The winners in vegetables are those locally grown, so they shelf life and warehouse time aren't driving their breeding and stage at harvest. Local doesn't assure you anything, but it's a start. Being able to talk to the grower is a big deal, or buying from a retailer who cares enough to talk to the grower.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:14 PM   #22
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My sister and I bought a cow together and got the meat from the butcher. It was the best beef I've had in a long time. The chuck roasts were so tender and flavorful. I hardly ever cooked chuck roasts before because they were always so tough and bland even with the onions and carrots added. I tend to avoid grocery store beef since then. I found a supplier for my ground beef. I'm searching for one for my other beef cuts.
Jabbur, are you familiar with Broken Arrows Farm in Zuni? They have grass-fed beef and free-range poultry. They sell in farmer's markets and through online ordering.

http://www.brokenarrowsfarm.com/
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Old 02-18-2013, 03:46 PM   #23
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It is all about the price of the meat in the market, people are not willing to pay more even for a good product. Thus there is all the garbage we already buying today.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:55 PM   #24
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But that's what's changing. Austin, Texas has four large farmers markets, two large urban farms, several smaller, multiple nearby rural retail farmers, and some growing custom salumerias and charcuterie operations. Prices are high, as expected, but it's hard to get into selling space at the markets, and the markets are busy. Big grocers are far behind but are catching on, because it's obvious to them that a lot of grocery money is passing them by. At least one is featuring local sources heavily, and Whole Foods and other such markets try to walk the line between grocery store and farmers market.

There will always be a market for schlock, but it's well to remember that we are seeing this change for the first time. Once, high production food meant safety and variety. Over time, we lost the experience of local, fresh, and natural foods. We are now reintroducing people to proper food. Home cooking is coming back. We do now at least have choices that didn't exist a few years ago. We have those choices because people are willing to pay more, and it's very clear that the number willing to pay more is growing pretty fast. The point is that it's not an evolution that's been steadily moving toward more schlock for less, and the tipping point may not be far off when we can say we've done the engineered crap for less thing and are headed back to getting actual food for our money.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:32 AM   #25
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sadly, we live in a world where more is better right alongside cheaper is better.

unfortunately, more for less isn't better. or even good for you. but they're hard habits to break.
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Old 02-19-2013, 02:34 AM   #26
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i'm so happy and thankful to have found grass-fed beef, (beasty-bloody-good) beef, sold by local farmers in my area. i had been buying my beefsteaks from omaha steaks for many months, and for a time they were good, compared to supermarket meats. inexplicably since october, the quality of their beef got to be a hit-or-miss deal. i began trying and buying the local beef and pork around that time. when i read the article about zilmax here the other day, i contacted omaha steaks to see if this growth hormone was being used by the ranchers they bought their meat from. it took several calls to get any answer at all. what i was finally told by the supervisor of customer care dept. was that the usda and the fda have both determined these growth hormones to be completely safe for human consumption. he never once mentioned the effect of growth hormones on the quality or flavor of the meat, the specific question that i had asked in my followup email to him. this led me to conclude, among other things, that what i had received from omaha steaks, was nothing more than a form letter, offering a 'stock' answer to health and safety concerns, also being raised by conscientious consumers. o.s. is not getting my business in the future. and as for fast foods? it's been years....
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Old 02-19-2013, 03:53 AM   #27
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Chemistry is, unfortunately, the future of food. The world’s population demands it. In 1900 the world’s population was about 1.6 billion. Today it is over 7 billion. The reason for the big increase, oil, and the ability to transport food.

We just have to hope someone is watching out for our health.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:09 PM   #28
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But that's what's changing. Austin, Texas has four large farmers markets, ...
S.Paul has one and it is a big joke, becasue it is only open during the summer and half of the stuff, vegies mostly, are not even local, sadly.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:50 PM   #29
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S.Paul has one and it is a big joke, becasue it is only open during the summer and half of the stuff, vegies mostly, are not even local, sadly.
Same problem here. They try to put up a farmers market down in the middle of Central Square. 99% of the produce comes from the distribution center not even ten minutes from my door. It serves all of N.E. And the produce is from all over the world.
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