i know these last few blog posts have been a lot to “digest” … but it’s important that we all share information and make conscious decisions about the food we eat, where it comes from, and the impact it has on the environment. i don’t know if you were able to watch oprah’s “food 101” show with michael pollan yesterday, but it was pretty amazing! she, like so many others, was shocked and moved to examine her eating habits after watching the brilliant food, inc. in fact, she is offering the dvd on amazon until tomorrow at midnight for $9.99. if you haven’t seen this phenomenal documentary, i urge you to do so – it could be the best $10 you ever spent!
the point of this blog is not to freak you out or make eating such a time-consuming drag that it becomes too exhausting to make good decisions. the point is that we all have to scrape beneath the surface a bit and see if the green claims that these big companies are making are genuine or simply greenwashing. which brings me to the milk…
i’m not a super big milk drinker, but my boyfriend is. thankfully, finding affordable organic milk actually hasn’t been that difficult. but what if that milk wasn’t all the things they said it was? what if the cows weren’t grazing in lovely bucolic pastures, but were confined in CAFO’s? how would i know? the cornucopia institute wants us to hold the office of management and budget (OMB) accountable for regulating the false claims regarding the raising of dairy cows, which are hurting small family farms because they cannot compete with the volume and pricing of the competition:
“With the flattening of demand for organic food, these giant dairies have flooded the market with cheap milk that is now crushing the family farmers who have built this industry,” said Mark Kastel, Senior Farm Policy Analyst at The Cornucopia Institute. “These CAFOs (concentrated animal feeding operations) are anathema to organic consumers investing in a more environmentally sensitive approach to food production and humane animal husbandry. Ironically, one of the reasons they are willing to pay extra for organic milk is they think that the farmers who produce it are being fairly treated.”
one of the things discussed on the oprah show yesterday was, will we be able to feed everyone consciously? i’m not a supporter of factory farms, but i understand some people cannot afford to buy organic. i simply don’t want people lying to me about my food – especially if i am paying more to do the right thing and if their lobbying and lying cause farmers who are doing the ethical and moral thing to go bankrupt.
- politics of the plate: can the agribusiness lobby kill small, organic dairy farmers?
- new york times: how much grass must be in organic milk?
- from la vida locavore: strange bedfellows? what’s going on in organic dairy?
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- Sarah Newman: Got Ethics? Dirty Dairy Exposed (huffingtonpost.com)