Beef

Dr. Joseph Mercola: Is This the End of Good Beef Products?

  • More than 85% of the grass fed beef sold in the U.S. is not raised in the U.S., yet it’s labeled “Product of the USA.” As a result of a loophole in the labeling law, American farmers who produce grass fed beef are forced to compete against far less expensive imported grass fed beef
  • In 2017, raising grass fed beef in Australia cost 59 cents per pound, whereas the cost per pound in the U.S. was $1.55 for large producers and as much as $4.26 per pound for a small farm
  • One of the reasons for this price discrepancy is the fact that countries like Australia and New Zealand have relatively temperate weather year-round. As a result, their cows can graze on pasture throughout the year, whereas American farmers must purchase feed during the winter
  • There’s a globally coordinated assault on agriculture. The G20, the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27) and the World Economic Forum are all pushing for radical reductions in farming to reach “net zero” greenhouse gas emissions
  • The “sustainability” that globalists are calling for is not the sustainability of the human population. What they’re referring to is the sustainable growth of a new global economic system based on the allocation of finite resources to the technocratic “rulers.” The rest of us will “own nothing,” because they intend to strip us of our ownership rights. It’s crucial that people understand that the “sustainability” solutions currently offered will result in the eradication of a large portion of humanity

(Mercola)—The video above is a short excerpt from a Joe Rogan interview (episode 2062) with Will Harris, the owner of a regenerative farm called White Oak Pastures, and his daughter Jenni Harris. In it, they discuss the ramifications of not having country of origin labeling on beef.

Twenty-five years ago, White Oak Pastures was the first “American made” grass fed beef brand on the market. Today, more than 85% of the grass fed beef sold in the U.S. is not raised in the U.S. Most of it comes from Australia, New Zealand and Uruguay. However, all that imported beef is legally labeled “Product of the USA.”

How is that possible? As explained by Will, “If value is added in this country, it’s a product of the USA.” “Added value” includes grinding, slicing, labeling, packaging, reboxing and transporting the meat. In other words, any kind of domestically performed processing and transport.

“But make no mistake, the animal was born, raised and slaughtered in Uruguay, Australia, New Zealand or 20 other countries,” Will says. As a result of this loophole in the labeling law, American farmers like the Harris family are forced to compete against far less expensive imported beef, which obviously has a negative impact on their profit margin.

In 2017, raising grass fed beef in Australia cost 59 cents per pound, whereas the cost per pound in the U.S. was $1.55 for large producers and as much as $4.26 per pound for a small farm.1 Naturally, if an American farmer wants to compete with Australian beef, they have to either find a way to slash costs, or produce at little to no profit.

One of the reasons for this price discrepancy is the fact that countries like Australia and New Zealand have relatively temperate weather year-round. As a result, their cows can graze on pasture throughout the year, whereas American farmers must purchase feed during the winter. The temperate climate also allows them to maintain much larger herd sizes, and scale cuts down the cost as well.

Country of Origin Labeling Excludes Beef and Pork

The U.S. does have a law in place that requires retailers to notify customers about the country of origin of certain foods. The Country of Origin labeling (COOL) law has been in effect since 2002. When first passed (under Title X of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002), it applied only to fresh beef, pork and lamb.

In 2008, the COOL requirements were expanded to include fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables. Congress repealed the COOL requirement for beef and pork in 2015 because the World Trade Organization (WTO) had issued a series of rulings prohibiting country of origin labels on these two commodities. The final rule removing mandatory COOL requirements for beef and pork in the U.S. was issued in February 2016.2

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Is Your Beef Truly Grass Fed?

American grass fed beef producers also face another unfair hurdle, as the USDA doesn’t have an official definition for “grass fed.” As reported by The Gazette:3

“Unlike anything with an organic seal, which requires adherence to more definitive USDA rules, calling beef ‘grass fed’ doesn’t require an on-farm inspection or even mandate that animals live freely on a pasture.

Some ‘grass fed’ beef comes from cattle raised in grass feedlots, where they are confined in pens and fed grass pellets … Other beef products are labeled ‘grass fed, grain-finished,’ a shorthand for the standard cattle practice of raising cows on grass for most of their lives and then fattening them up quickly at the end.”

Under the USDA, terms like “grass fed” and “free-range” are voluntary marketing claims4 that aren’t backed up by stringent certification requirements or inspections. To address this shortcoming, organizations such as the American Grassfed Association (AGA) have stepped in to create their own national standards.

At present, the best and most rigorous grass fed certification in the U.S. is that of the AGA.5 AGA certified grass fed beef is raised on a 100% grass diet from weaning until slaughter. They’re also raised on pasture, without confinement throughout their life cycle, and are never treated with antibiotics or added growth hormones.

Importantly, all AGA certified animals are also born and raised on American family farms that employ a regenerative approach to farm management. The take-home here is that if you want to support American beef producers, make sure the beef you buy is AGA certified. The “Product of the USA” label is meaningless.

USDA to Revise Labeling Guidelines for Grass Fed Beef

In June 2023, the USDA announced it intends to revise meat labeling guidelines for claims like “grass fed” and “free-range” to require verification of how the animals were actually raised.6 The agency also plans to “strongly encourage” third-party certification to verify grass fed claims.

Time will tell whether the USDA’s revisions will have the intended effect. Time and again, sneaky loopholes have allowed even the largest producers to compete by making claims they don’t live up to.

For example, many large-scale egg producers claim their hens are raised on free-range pasture, when in fact the only “pasture” the chickens have access to is a concrete slab that most can’t get to anyway due to the sheer number of chickens in the flock.

Agriculture Is Under Coordinated Assault

While the USDA may appear to care about food quality and giving consumers accurate and truthful information about the food we buy, the larger agenda is pushing in a different direction entirely. As reported by Global Research,7 there’s a globally coordinated “all-out assault” on agriculture.

“The recent G20 governmental meeting in Bali, the UN Agenda 2030 COP27 meeting in Egypt, the Davos World Economic Forum [WEF] and Bill Gates are all complicit,” Global Research reporter William Engdahl writes.

“Typically, they are using dystopian linguistic framing to give the illusion they are up to good when they are actually advancing an agenda that will lead to famine and death for hundreds of millions not billions if allowed to proceed.”

Engdahl goes on to review the agendas of the G20, Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP278) and the WEF as they pertain to our continued ability to produce food.

G20 Plan — Change Food System to Combat Climate Change

November 13, 2022, the G20 agreed on a final declaration in which they call for “an accelerated transformation” toward “sustainable and resilient” agriculture, food systems and supply chains to “ensure that food systems better contribute to adaptation and mitigation to climate change …”

Importantly, the G20 is committed to achieving “global net zero greenhouse gas emissions/carbon neutrality by or around mid-century.” As noted by Engdahl:9

“’Sustainable agriculture’ with ‘net zero greenhouse gas emissions’ is Orwellian doublespeak … What in fact is being promoted is the most radical destruction of farming and agriculture globally under the name ‘sustainable agriculture.’”

COP27 Plan — Kill Farming to ‘Save the Planet’

Days after the G20 meeting, the UN’s COP27’s annual Green Agenda Climate Summit meeting took place. There, participants (which included UN member states and hundreds of “green” NGOs) launched an initiative called FAST, which stands for Food and Agriculture for Sustainable Transformation.

Just like the G20 declaration, the FAST initiative calls for a rapid shift toward “sustainable, climate-resilient, healthy diets” to address climate change. But what does that entail, exactly? As noted by Engdahl, the acronym reveals quite a bit, seeing how “fast” means “to abstain from eating food.” Reading between and behind the lines, it’s quite clear that the globalist plan is to severely restrict traditional food production and consumption. Engdahl writes:10

“According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization … within a year the FAO will launch a ‘gold standard’ blueprint for reduction of so-called Greenhouse gases from agriculture.

The impulse for this war on agriculture comes not surprisingly from big money, [the] FAIRR Initiative, a UK-based coalition of international investment managers which focuses on ‘material ESG risks and opportunities caused by intensive livestock production.’

Their members include the most influential players in global finance including BlackRock, JP Morgan Asset Management, Allianz AG of Germany, Swiss Re, HSBC Bank, Fidelity Investments, Edmond de Rothschild Asset Management, Credit Suisse, Rockefeller Asset Management, UBS Bank and numerous other banks and pension funds with total assets under management of $25 trillion.

They are now opening the war on agriculture much as they have on energy … The FAIRR claims, without proof, that ‘food production accounts for around a third of global greenhouse gas emissions and is the main threat to 86% of the world’s species at risk of extinction, while cattle ranching is responsible for three quarters of Amazon rainforest loss.’

The FAO plans to propose drastic reduction in global livestock production, especially cattle, which FAIRR claims is responsible for ‘nearly a third of the global methane emissions linked to human activity, released in the form of cattle burps, manure and the cultivation of feed crops.’ For them, the best way to stop cow burps and cow manure is to eliminate cattle.

The fact that the UN FAO is about to release a roadmap to drastically reduce so-called greenhouse gases from global agriculture, under the false claim of ‘sustainable agriculture’ that is being driven by the world’s largest wealth managers … tells volumes about the true agenda.

These are some of the most corrupt financial institutions on the planet. They never put a penny where they are not guaranteed huge profits. The war on farming is their next target.”

‘Sustainable’ for Whom?

Engdahl points out that the term “sustainable” was created by David Rockefeller’s Malthusian Club of Rome. In its 1974 report, “Mankind at the Turning Point,” The Club of Rome argued that nations cannot become interdependent lest they give up some of their independence.

To encourage this giving up of independence, the Club drew up a master plan for “sustainable growth and world development based on global allocation of all finite resources and a new global economic system.” This master plan formed the foundation of what eventually became UN Agenda 21, Agenda 2030, and The Great Reset. Continuing to quote Engdahl:11

“The UN and Davos WEF teamed up in 2019 to jointly advance the SDG [sustainable development goals] UN Agenda 2030. On the WEF website this is openly admitted to mean getting rid of meat protein sources, introducing promoting unproven fake meat, advocating alternative protein such as salted ants or ground crickets or worms to replace chicken or beef or lamb.

At COP27, discussion was about ‘diets that can remain within planetary boundaries, including lowering meat consumption, developing alternatives, and spurring the shift towards more native plants, crops and grains (thus reducing the current reliance on wheat, maize, rice, potatoes).’

The WEF is promoting a shift from meat protein diets to vegan arguing it would be more ‘sustainable.’ They also promote lab-grown or plant-based lab meat alternatives such as the Bill Gates-funded Impossible Burgers, whose own FDA tests indicate it is a likely carcinogen as it is produced with GMO soy and other products saturated with glyphosate.

The CEO of Air Protein, another fake meat company, Lisa Lyons, is a special WEF adviser. WEF also promotes insect protein alternatives to meat … The war on animal raising for meat is just getting deadly serious.

The government of the Netherlands whose Prime Minister Mark Rutte … is a WEF Agenda Contributor … announced it will forcibly close 2,500 cattle farms across Holland. Their goal is to force fully 30% of cattle farms to close or face expropriation.

In Germany the German Meat Industry Association (VDF), says that within the next four to six months Germany will face a meat shortage, and prices will skyrocket … The issues in meat supply are due to Berlin insisting on reducing the numbers of livestock by 50% to reduce global warming emissions.

In Canada, the Trudeau government, another Davos WEF product … plans to cut emissions from fertilizer 30% by 2030 as part of a plan to get to net zero in the next three decades. But growers are saying that to achieve that, they may have to shrink grain output significantly.

When the autocratic President of Sri Lanka banned all import of nitrogen fertilizers in April 2021 in a brutal effort to return to a past of ‘sustainable’ agriculture, harvests collapsed in seven months and famine and farmer ruin and mass protests forced him to flee the country. He ordered that the entire country would immediately switch to organic farming but provided farmers with no such training.

Combine all this with the catastrophic EU political decision to ban Russian natural gas used to make nitrogen-based fertilizers, forcing shutdowns of fertilizer plants across the EU, that will cause a global reduction in crop yields, and as well the fake Bird Flu wave that is falsely ordering farmers across North America and the EU to kill off tens of millions of chickens and turkeys … and it becomes clear that our world faces a food crisis that is unprecedented. All for climate change?”

Understand What’s at Stake

Indeed, the forces at play on the global scene are marching us straight toward worldwide famine under the banner of saving the planet. Mass starvation will be the end result if they get their way, and there’s every reason to suspect they know this.

You’d have to be an idiot to not understand that if you drastically cut production of key food staples there will be food shortages, and if people don’t have enough to eat, eventually they die. You also have to be way behind the eight-ball not to realize that lab-grown meat alternatives and insects will not provide the same nutrition as real meat, and malnutrition is almost as bad as no nutrition. The end result is much the same.

So, the “sustainability” these globalists are calling for is NOT the sustainability of the human population. The sustainability they’re referring to is the sustainable growth of their new global economic system, which is based on the allocation of all finite resources. And to whom will all these world’s resources be allocated? It will go to themselves — the technocratic echelon, which includes the richest of the rich — of course.

The rest of us will “own nothing,” because they intend to strip us of our ownership rights and seize our assets. That’s what programmable central bank digital currencies and a central ledger is all about. Somehow, the promise that we’ll “be happy,” has also been thrown in there, but that’s pure fantasy.

It’s universally understood that private ownership is key to freedom and prosperity, which in turn tends to foster contentment and some measure of happiness. So, at this point, it’s really crucial that people understand the context within which the word “sustainability” is being used, and that it implies the eradication of a large portion of humanity.

Call on Legislators to Support the PRIME Act

If we want to avoid worldwide famine, we must stand together against those who seek to prohibit food production under false pretenses. We also need to encourage, support and push for MORE local food production.

To that end, tell your representatives and senators to cosponsor the PRIME Act — House Resolution 281412 (H.R. 2814) and Senate Bill 90713 (S.907) — which would allow states to pass laws to legalize the sale of custom slaughtered and processed meat in intrastate commerce. As explained by The Weston A. Price Foundation:14

“Passage of the PRIME Act would better enable farmers to meet booming demand for locally produced meat. Right now in parts of the country, farmers have to book a slaughterhouse slot as much as 1-1/2 to 2 years out.

Moreover, farmers often have to transport their animals several hours to a slaughterhouse, increasing their expenses and stressing out the animals which could affect the quality of the meat. Passage of the PRIME Act would significantly increase access to local slaughterhouses.

Passage of the PRIME Act would improve food safety. Anywhere from 95% to 99% of the meat produced in the U.S. is slaughtered in huge facilities that process 300–400 cattle an hour. It is difficult to have quality control in the plant under those conditions no matter how many inspectors are present …

The big plants process more animals in a day than a custom house would in a year. There is better quality control in a custom slaughterhouse, inspector or no inspector … Custom operators have every incentive to process clean meat. Where a lawsuit against a big plant is just a cost of doing business, one lawsuit can easily shut down a custom house.

Passage of the PRIME Act would improve food security. Supply chain breakdowns and labor shortages have made the food supply more vulnerable. Passage of the PRIME Act would improve food security by increasing the local supply of quality meat, food that for most of us is critical for a healthy diet …

Passage of the PRIME Act would keep more of the food dollar in the state and community. The big food corporations send much of the money they earn out of the state; more of the money that local farmers, ranchers and custom house operators earn would circulate within the state and community, strengthening the local economy.”

This bill has been before Congress for eight years already. It’s time to get it passed, and the best way to do that is to get it into the 2023 Farm Bill. You can look up your representatives at www.congress.gov, or call the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.

If you cannot meet with your legislators face-to-face, call and/or email your U.S. representative and both of your U.S. senators and ask them to cosponsor HR 2814 / S907. Talking points and other tips on how to contact and interact with your legislators can be found here.