Saturday, August 29, 2009

veal

I myself think that most veal cannot be trusted, so I do not eat it.

However, I am a fan of a certain BBC America show called The F Word. In a very recent episode, one of Gordon Ramsay's friends, Janet Street-Porter, raised two veal calves to raise awareness about British veal. There's an interview about it here.

I was absolutely touched by this episode. The animals were well cared for, and we as the viewers were able to accompany them to a small, family-owned slaughterhouse.

I wasn't sure I'd be able to watch, but I did.

Up to the moment the animals were stunned with a captive bolt gun, they were under no stress at all. They were not frightened. They were calm and placid up to the end.

I was completely impressed.

I think many people feel that those of us who do eat meat are "for" factory farming. I myself am not. Most people who believe in real food are against factory farming. It's unhealthy for the animals, which in turn is unhealthy for us. I certainly do not want to eat food that has been made to suffer unduly. But in addition, meats that are conventionally raised are just bad for us in general.

The fat in conventionally raised beef, for example, has a terrible profile. It's very high in omega 6 fats, which is not good for you.

In order to get meat that is high in omega 3 fats, the animals need to be fed a species-appropriate diet. The feed that beef cattle are generally fed -- corn and soy -- is not what they'd be eating in the wild.

Currently, my finances do not allow me to buy the quality of meat I would like to buy. I do the best I can with what I can afford, and I take fish oil capsules to raise the levels of omega 3 fats that I consume.

But I do applaud The F Word for its unflinching view of slaughterhouse practices, and its commitment to local, healthy, and sustainable ingredients.

2 comments:

Ang said...

S-
I agree with you wholeheartedly. I would love to buy quality meats, but they aren't available for the most part where I live (Korea) and I have to make due with what's in stock. I buy out all the New Zealand lamb when it's available and try to stay away from the beef there. This weekend we found a goose. Free-range goose! I had to snatch it up because of its fatty deliciousness. I could make a ton of fat, broth, have lots of meat, etc. There would be no part of this animal that would be wasted. Anyways, I've always tended more towards the vegetarian side but that made me sicker so I am really trying to eat more meat. When we were in the checkout line, this woman saw us with the goose and said, "That's pets in the park!" I was a bit shocked. First, a goose is not a pet. And second, I feel guilty enough eating so much meat. I asked her if she was a vegetarian because I completely respect their beliefs and she said NO! I couldn't believe she could be so condiscending about me eating a free-range goose when she probably doesn't even know what that means (judging by what she had in her cart).

The SCD girl said...

Hi Ang,

You are so lucky to have found a goose! I've seen rabbit now and then but a lot of times I'm not sure of what's in it, especially if I go to an Asian store.

It's tough to find wild or free range animals that are also not too expensive. I found a place that sells free range turkeys... they start at $150 each... I just about died. :P

I also respect vegetarians, although I do tend to remind them to eat more REAL food and less packaged vegetarian convenience foods! It's so easy to fall into a junk food trap as a veggie, because you're just happy to find something vegetarian.

Thanks for commenting! I agree, a goose is not a pet. :)