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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Not Just 1 "Mad Cow" But Maybe 100 or More?

Not Just 1 "Mad Cow" But Maybe 100 or More?
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iWrite
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Jan 10, 2004, 11:54 AM
 
READ HERE

Turns out that "110 cows were culled" or killed and entered the food chain, all of them having eaten the same food and lived with the same "downer" cow that had BSE, and we'll never know if they had BSE or "mad cow disease" that humans may contract.

Pretty sad. BTW, they all came from Canada from a "farm going out of business."




In narrowing the list of cows to be killed, investigators searched the birth records of every animal on the Mabton farm. Those that were traced to the Alberta herd or whose origins could not be determined were put on the kill list. That number came to a total of 258.

Of those, 110 had been "culled" from the herd, officials said, meaning they could have already entered the human food supply. Dairy farmers typically use the term "culled" for cows pulled from milk production and sent to slaughter.
     
amsalpemkcus
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Jan 10, 2004, 12:07 PM
 
I think it is about time we made the Cow a holy animal as well!!
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 12:15 PM
 
VERY good idea!



(By the way, your MacNN name is VERY interesting... )
     
Zimphire
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Jan 10, 2004, 01:42 PM
 
Oh come on iWrite they came from America! It's a conspiracy!

     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 01:52 PM
 
Ya think?

     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 02:31 PM
 
THIS ARTICLE blatantly says that the cows were at-risk and are/were in the food supply. About 150 people have died so far from the disease in Great Britain even though the British government went out of the way to proclaim their beef "safe and edible."

Sounds like the same thing going on in this country.
     
Zimphire
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Jan 10, 2004, 02:33 PM
 
Beef IS safe. When you don't feed cows cow parts.
     
lil'babykitten
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Jan 10, 2004, 02:45 PM
 
Originally posted by Zimphire:
Beef IS safe. When you don't feed cows cow parts.
Yeah but the problem is that the cows have been fed cow parts!
     
amsalpemkcus
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Jan 10, 2004, 03:12 PM
 
Originally posted by Zimphire:
Beef IS safe. When you don't feed cows cow parts.
i dont think it is so simple. bse is a grey area for science. click on the following urls:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/madcow/faces.html

http://people.ku.edu/~jbrown/madcow.html
( Last edited by amsalpemkcus; Jan 10, 2004 at 03:23 PM. )
     
SeSawaya
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Jan 10, 2004, 03:44 PM
 
Bovine growth hormone has been REAL good for us too.

150 deaths is bad, real bad, but more people die from eating McDonalds everyday with its quality high fat/cholesterol diet. Thats "safe" right?

now I going to eat a steak!
     
Superchicken
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Jan 10, 2004, 03:55 PM
 
Why is everyone blaming Canada? You guys are the ones who bought our cows. Why don't you do your own tests to em!
     
vmpaul
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Jan 10, 2004, 04:11 PM
 
Originally posted by amsalpemkcus:
i dont think it is so simple. bse is a grey area for science. click on the following urls:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/madcow/faces.html

http://people.ku.edu/~jbrown/madcow.html
Besides the point. They shouldn't be feeding cow remains to cows in the first place. Neither should they be eating corn to the degree they are fed it. That's the reason industry cattle are given massive doses of antibiotics. The cows can't digest it. it wreaks havoc with their digestive system. They get sick and are given antibiotics, which has produced a number of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria, which find their way into the human food chain, etc.etc,...You want to know the beef industries answer? Irradiation. Irradiate the meat after slaughter to kill all drug-resistant bacteria. It's an insane system. Madcow is just another symptom.

Read this short interview for more info. Here's a short excerpt:


GROSS: So the cow now is eating corn instead of eating grass. Its stomach is made for digesting grass and turning it into protein. How does the cow's digestive system handle corn?

Mr. POLLAN: Well, very poorly. It'll go kablooey if it's not done very gradually. And I talked to people who said that most cows, most beef cattle getting a heavy diet of corn--and again, they can tolerate some of it, but when you crank it up to 70, 80, 90 percent grain, their stomachs go haywire. They suffer from a range of different phenomenon, one of which is bloat.

You know, the rumen, this organ, is always producing copious amounts of gas, and these are expelled during rumination, you know, when the animal kind of chews its cud. It regurgitates this bolus of grass and in the process releases all this greenhouse gas, essentially methane and things because when you're digesting grass much gas is produced. But when they're eating corn, this layer of slime forms over the mass in the rumen, and it doesn't allow the gas to escape. So what happens is the rumen begins to expand like a balloon until it's pressing up against the lungs of the animal. And if nothing is done to release the pressure of that gas, the animal suffocates. It can't breathe anymore. So what do they do? Well, if it gets to that point, they force a hose down the esophagus of the animal, and that releases the gas, and they very quickly put them back on hay for a little while.

So that's one of the things that can go wrong. Well, perhaps the most dramatic. But a whole other range of problems are created because the corn acidifies the rumen. The rumen has basically a neutral pH when it's healthy and getting grass, and that's very significant for a lot of reasons. But you feed it corn and it gets a lot more acidic. And the rumen can't deal with acids, and what happens is the acids gradually eat away at the wall of the rumen, creating little lesions or ulcers through which bacteria can pass. And the bacteria get into the bloodstream and travel down to the liver, which collects all such impurities, and infects the liver. And that is why more than 13 percent of the animals slaughtered in this country are found to have abscessed livers that have to be thrown away and is a sign of disease.

But this low-level sickness, acidosis or even subacute acidosis, as they call it, afflicts many, many--probably the majority--of feedlot calves, and it leaves them vulnerable to all sorts of other diseases. Their immune systems are compromised. So they get this, you know, horrifying list of feedlot diseases. You know, we have these diseases of civilization, you know, heart disease and such things. Well, they have their own diseases of civilization: feedlot polio, abscessed livers, rumenitis, all these kinds of things that cows in nature simply don't get.

GROSS: Is this where the antibiotics come in?

Mr. POLLAN: Yeah. The only way you can keep a cow alive getting this much corn would be with antibiotics. And they get large quantities of antibiotics with their feed every day. They get rumensin, which is technically an ionophore. It's a kind of antibiotic that helps with the bloat and the acidosis. And then they get tylosin, which is in the erythromycin family. And that antibiotic cuts down on the incidence of liver disease, and without that, they would all have liver disease probably.
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kmkkid
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Jan 10, 2004, 04:13 PM
 
Originally posted by Superchic[k]en:
Why is everyone blaming Canada? You guys are the ones who bought our cows. Why don't you do your own tests to em!
I bet the restricted feed came from the US in the first place. Savages.



Chris
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 07:33 PM
 
vmpaul: VERY interesting article, indeed.

About where the cows came from, it could have happened here just as easily.

I read somewhere else that the reason that cow (and perhaps the others) was infected was because it was most likely fed cow's blood in its feed. Apparently using the blood from the cows they're butchering for food to feed it to calves is common practice everywhere.

Also, other animals also get animal offal: Chickens, pigs, and yes, sheep even.

Sheep got scrapie from eating other sheep, incidentally. Scrapie is also a spongiform encephaly disease -- same as BSE or mad cow disease.

All of these diseases cause a protein reaction as the result of prions -- the proteins are prompted by an "unfolded" protein (evident in these diseases) to unfold themselves. An unfolded protein gets next to a healthy folded protein and it causes the protein it is touching to unfold, and that one makes the next one unfold, and so on and so forth. Soon all of the proteins unfold and the proteins die, leaving a "spongy" brain.

The scariest thing is that prion research is in its infancy and we have hardly any information about it thus far, let alone how to treat it.
     
dtriska
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Jan 10, 2004, 08:09 PM
 
Originally posted by iWrite:
Pretty sad. BTW, they all came from Canada from a "farm going out of business."

BTW, they were all infected in the US.

Do I have proof? Hell, no. The US doesn't need proof, and neither do I.

Oh, and I'd like to ask one question: why the hell are your infected cows making it into the food system? Our mad cow was stopped before entering our food system. That tells me the US is the high-risk cattle country, not Canada.
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 08:27 PM
 
I don't even know what you're talking about, to be honest.

The infected cow CAME from Canada -- it's a fact that both Canadian and American authorities agree on.

So, what's your argument? Your own government says it came from Alberta -- that's in Canada, last I heard?

It really doesn't matter, though, WHICH country it came from. The point is that it happened at all and it happened as the result of feeding practices that never should have occurred. As was pointed out, man has been altering the diets of animals for quite some time such as feeding the steers and cows a diet heavy in grain. Or force-feeding ducks corn to make foie gras.

I'm going to start buying ONLY free range eggs and meats from now on. There is a Whole Earth Foods (I think that's the name of it?) organic store here where I live, but it's 35 miles away one direction. Not exactly close. If my local supermarket would carry more organic foods I would certainly buy them.
     
winwintoo
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Jan 10, 2004, 08:46 PM
 
Hmmmm.

My sis moved from Canada to the US about 40 years ago. About 20 years after she moved, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Now following your cow logic, did she take the cancer with her form Canada, or did she get sick in the US - remember she had been living in the US for about 20 years before she got sick.

The cow appears to have been born in Canada. Somebody in the US bought the cow and it was shipped south. Some time later (a number of years I believe) the cow appeared sick and was slaughtered.

So how can you prove where the cow got sick. There's no proof that it was sick when it crossed the border. What if it got sick after it went south.

Aside from feeding cow parts (and corn) to cows, why are the slaughter houses allowed to process downer cattle for the food chain? If an animal arrives at the slaughter house door stumbling and falling down with buckets of drool hanging from it's slack jaw, how dare they skin it and gut it and sell it to the unsuspecting consumer as prime beef?

Oh, by the way, the cow that caused billions of dollars of damage to Canada's beef industry last summer came from the states.

m
     
dtriska
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Jan 10, 2004, 08:58 PM
 
Originally posted by iWrite:
I don't even know what you're talking about, to be honest.

The infected cow CAME from Canada -- it's a fact that both Canadian and American authorities agree on.
The cow came from Canada. Where it was infected is yet to be determined and is the issue.

And, guess what? BSE doesn't necessarily take 3 years to incubate. It can be found in cattle less than two years old. So, your mad cow could have been infected in the US, where the cattle rules and regulations are vastly inferior to Canada's. If you follow this logic, the US has the BSE problem, and Canada may be clean.
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 09:02 PM
 
Okay. Whatever you say.

I don't have to fight about it. BSE originated in Great Britain and since Canada admits to having the same feeding practices (and has since changed their feeding practices), apparently BSE originated in a country other than ours.

But, like winwintoo said (much more adroitly), it really will never be determined and the fact of the matter is that NO "sick" animals should be used for consumption period.

It's just disgusting and that IS part of the problem, period.
     
dtriska
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Jan 10, 2004, 09:07 PM
 
Originally posted by iWrite:
I don't have to fight about it. BSE originated in Great Britain and since Canada admits to having the same feeding practices (and has since changed their feeding practices), apparently BSE originated in a country other than ours.
The US had the same feeding practices as the UK until August, 1997 when both Canada and the US put bans in place together.

Really, you shouldn't be passing off your ignorance like this. It's quite amazing.
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 09:20 PM
 
Yup. Whatever. We don't have 143 dead people in THIS country from BSE.

They're in Great Britain. One is in the U.S and she has BSE but she spent the better part of her life in London, Great Britain, of course, so the consensus is that she contracted it there since she was only here for a very short while before symptoms appeared. Her name is "Charlene" and she is still alive in Florida, though in assisted living. She is receiving hyperbaric chamber treatments in the hope that enriched oxygen breathing treatments will help her -- and it appears that they have helped her slightly.

But, then, I'm the -- how did you say it -- "ignorant one."

     
vmpaul
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Jan 10, 2004, 09:25 PM
 
Originally posted by iWrite:

I'm going to start buying ONLY free range eggs and meats from now on. There is a Whole Earth Foods (I think that's the name of it?) organic store here where I live, but it's 35 miles away one direction. Not exactly close. If my local supermarket would carry more organic foods I would certainly buy them.
That's good to hear iWrite. We've been buying from Whole Foods for a couple of years now (since we heard that program in fact) and I have to say it honestly hasn't been more expensive. Because we usually end up going to different markets for groceries (WF doesn't carry everything we like) it's a little bit more complicated. You have to be a little more organized because we try to buy whatever meat we plan on having for a two week, or monthly, period to avoid extra trips.

One thing to remember. All the beef they carry isn't necessarily organic. To qualify as organic a producer has to pass certain guidelines requiring the feed given to the animal. Since the cattle are free-range and grass-fed, the ranch doesn't have as much control over the toxins or fertilizers that might have been applied to the fields they graze. But that's a minimal concern especially compared to the the feed that industry cattle are fed, including the growth hormones and antibiotics they're given. I feel so much better about what I'm putting in my body now when we decide to have beef or chicken. Needles to say, but I didn't bat an eye when this latest Madcow scare broke out because I now longer participate in that cycle.
The only thing that I am reasonably sure of is that anybody who's got an ideology has stopped thinking. - Arthur Miller
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 10:38 PM
 
I LOVE your sig, vmpaul!



Anyway, thanks for the heads up.

You know, we don't eat much beef anyway. Spouse grew up in the Southwest where beef is pretty much a staple, but myself and the kids really don't care for it that much. I use ground turkey in everything that requires ground beef. To be honest, it is tastier and less greasy, so spices added to a recipe aren't covered by greases or oils and the recipe tastes fresher, much better.

We eat a lot of chicken as a rule, anyway, due to the cost of beef. Funny thing is, before the beef scare the average price per pound of NY strip steak was $9.89 per pound at the local grocery store. Now I see (two days ago) that the price is now $6.99 a pound and the employee stocking the meat bin said that yes, the price of beef has come down due to sales dropping.

We've been eating turkey-based cold cuts for quite a while now, anyway. Louis Rich bologna and that sort of thing. If we go to Subway for a sandwich I get the Cold Cut Trio because it's made of turkey-based cold cuts. (Don't go there much, though, but do go there as an alternative to McDonald's.)

Here is an interesting story about a family that is affected by this issue -- firsthand account -- READ HERE. Brings home the issue and makes it more personal instead of something you just read about from afar.
     
iWrite  (op)
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Jan 10, 2004, 10:50 PM
 
     
sideus
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Jan 11, 2004, 12:53 AM
 
I had cheeseburger today. It was good.
     
   
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