LOCAL VOICES: Plenty of safe beef to go around

By PAM HANSBERGER Third generation farmer in Huron County An interesting column appeared Feb. 25 in the Sandusky Regis
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

By PAM HANSBERGER

Third generation farmer in Huron County

An interesting column appeared Feb. 25 in the Sandusky Register. It started off with the headline, “If a cow is being tortured...”

Well, that sure got my attention ! It was a basic statement that livestock producers were bad and people that didn’t meat were good.

I thought it would at least be fair to answer the points made by the author.

Its one of the sad realities in life that there are “bad” apples in every bunch. In business and industry and everywhere there those that don’t want to play by the rules.

There is a (former) policeman in Canton that killed his girl friend. Does that tell us all police officersrs are bad? No!

We know there are certain stores that cell beer to minors. Does that mean all stores do it? No!

It is the same with the hundreds of thousands of people that produce the food we eat. There were a few employees in California that did not follow the basic rules. Should they have been shut down? Absolutely! The Department of Agriculture rules are there to keep all our food safe. Any producer cutting corners should be punished to the full extent of the law.

The orchard that grows your apples. The man down the street who gives you zucchini squash. The local family with a dairy farm. All these people want you to have safe and nutritious food. The food I raise is eaten by my children, my pregnant daughter-in-law, my parents. I want it to be the safest.

If you don’t think we care about our animals, come by our house. Let’s say, about 4 a.m. when a lamb needs to be bottle fed. Or, when its 5 degrees and snowing, but a waterer is frozen and my husband has to go out to the barn, again.

If you have been around FFA or 4-H you will know these youngsters are given special instruction about how important proper treatment of livestock is.

The statement was made in the column “Factory farming is one of the most bloody and barbaric aspects of our civilized society.” I guess, if you do not want to eat watermelon in February or Chilian sea bass or bananas in December or drink designer bottled water, you don’t need corporations involved in farming. But it seems most of us want a huge selection of food at low prices. Fresh and fast.

I think everyone has a right to eat as they please. If you want to be vegetarian thats fine. But if you are, you are eating all those out of season fruits and veggies and those soy burgers made in a factory, not a field.

I am glad there is plenty of safely produced beef to go around. As a matter of fact, even if it’s snowing outside, I feel like a good steak. Time to light the grill. Anyone for a double cheese burger ?