As I explained it to my Social Policy class Monday night, I have a new "passion," if you will...educating myself and others about the food, namely meat, that we are putting into our bodies--and the bodies of our children. #1 on my 31 Things for my 31st Year List was to become more aware of what I eat, where it comes from, and how it affects my health.
The first thing I did towards this end was to read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. This promptly had me not eating animals...if you haven't read it, you should. I have since watched Food, Inc. and investigated a few of the local meat producers, Caw Caw Creek Farms and Wil-Moore Farms. I have also begun shopping more at the All-Local Farmers' Market at 701 Whaley St. in Columbia.
Today I came across two articles that are valid pieces of investigative journalism questioning the safety of the meat we eat in this country--the safety of beef processing as well as the antibiotics fed to the animals.
Here is an article I found on the blog Grits and Gravy: Adventures of a South Carolina Foodie. The article by Michael Moss of the New York Times questions the safety of beef-processing methods in America.
This article I found in my Pew Charitable Trusts weekly e-mail, Pew News Now. It is a report by Katie Couric of CBS investigating if feeding farm animals antibiotics is producing drug-resistant bacteria. (I think, how could it not be?!) Here is the video report, aired on the CBS Evening News on February 9, 2010.
In the midst of all of this educating and investigating and finding out things I never wanted to find out about the meat that is raised and slaughtered in this country, I am also learning about people who are doing the right thing. The right thing not only for the people they are feeding, but also for the animals they raise for meat. Two of those people, locally, are Emile DeFelice, of Caw Caw Creek, and Kristian Niemi of Rosso Trattoria Italia (and Gervais & Vine). Niemi does his best to serve local ingredients when possible, as well as humanely and organically raised meats, such as pork from Caw Caw Creek Farm. See the video below, Episode 1 of a new series called Off Menu with Kristian, where he takes a tour of Caw Caw Creek and then demonstrates a recipe of Grilled Pork Chops with Apple Chutney.
Stayed tuned for more posts highlighting local restaurateurs and farmers doing their best to serve healthy, humanely treated, and locally-grown meats and vegetables.