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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Potatoes Say Good-bye

Geez, I love taters. I don't know if there are many other people out there who adore potatoes like I do. I love them fried, baked, mashed, crinkled, shredded, covered in cheese, boiled and even raw. They are their own food group to me - a delicious food group of starchy perfection.

Which is why I've decided to give them up.

But only until Easter - and then it's game on for Grandma Buzzard's fried chicken and mashed taters for Easter dinner.

That's right, I'm giving up potatoes for Lent and I think this may be an even harder challenge than when I gave up soda for Lent (a lack of Dr. Pepper almost killed me).  So what will I be eating instead? 

Well, I'm obviously not going to cut back on my meat consumption. I'll continue to enjoy lean beef, tasty pork and lots of different forms of chicken. But to fill the gap on my plate where potatoes used to go......


That's not an exaggeration, I generally am pretty strictly meat and potatoes.... and cottage cheese. I looooooooove cottage cheese. If you don't believe me, ask the Ninja.

To fill this void I'll likely be eating a lot more of the following things:

- Green beans - did you know one cup of green beans contains 30% of your daily Vitamin C req's?
- Corn - One cup contains a pretty significant amount of Thiamin and Vitamic C
- Rice/pasta - I'll try to eat whole grain options in this category. Whole grain foods are very heart healthy and by the way, so is lean beef!
- Cottage cheese - this obviously has a lot of calcium in it!

If you haven't noticed, I'm not a big fan of vegetables. However, I like lots of different kinds of meats so maybe I'll rotate some kangaroo or some other exotic meat in there to toss things up a bit!

Are you giving anything up for Lent? If so, what?!

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Does PETA cross a line with new ad?

picture courtesy PETA

I think the new PETA ad crosses the line and is pretty bold considering it puts a different spin on a form of domestic abuse (disclaimer: I am not saying they promote/condone domestic abuse. So please don't flood my comment stream with stuff about how I am reading into things and exaggerating). I also don't think this type of advertising is successful in converting people to vegetarianism/veganism.  It's more for shock value, in my opinion. Read the short article and watch the video by clicking the link below.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/cutline/does-peta-ad-featuring-young-pantsless-woman-neckbrace-222920818.html

I can't find the ad on YouTube so hopefully you clicked the link and watched it.

What do you think?

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Monday, February 13, 2012

Chipotle Strikes a Nerve with Grammy Commercial


10:30 pm Sunday: I'm so livid right now, I can't even form a coherent sentence. So I may have to come back and finish this post in the morning.
*********

Monday morning/afternoonish: Ok, I'm back. A good night's sleep and a few deep breaths has me calmed me down enough that now I can at least form sentences and not scream at stupid Chipotle commercials.
If you haven't seen the commercial that aired last night during the Grammy's (I didn't watch the Grammy's but once I saw my Facebook and Twitter blowing up, I went to YouTube and watched the disaster), please do so now, so that you're aware of what I'm talking about.

I can't even begin to explain everything that is wrong with this commercial, but I'll try:

1. Livestock are not raised indoors because farmers are lazy. Quite the opposite actually. As I type this, there is snow on the ground and it's 27 degrees in Kansas and spitting sleet oh and don't forget it's Kansas so it's always windy. If I was a dairy cow or a pig, I'd wanna be indoors and out of the snow and wind.

2. Supporting local farmers is a great endeavor however, there is not always a year-round farmers market that has every grocery item from A-Z in every small town. Without Hyvee, Dillons and yes, the dastardly Wal-Mart, my little family would starve. Transporting food from where it was grown to where it is sold is not evil or wrong. It's called infrastructure and we should be very thankful we have it. Countries in Africa don't have very good infrastructure and therefore have a lot of food shortages and hunger problems.

3. Did you know there is 77 times more hormones (estrogen) in ONE EGG than in a 100 gram portion of implanted beef? I didn't make that up, it's the facts. Antibiotics are used during stressful times in an animal life when the immune system is compromised and when they need to be treated for sickness. Antibiotics on farms are not used irresponsibly or willi-nilli.

4. Farmers and ranchers aren't running factories. To say otherwise is absurd. Producers check their livestock on a daily basis and are always striving to provide the utmost care possible so that the quality of life for their livestock is as best as can be.

Also, did you know that even though Chipotle claims to use local, certified organic products they quite often can't find enough supply to meet their demand and end up using conventionally produced products? They admit it:
“We do, however, face challenges associated with pursuing Food With Integrity. For example, current economic conditions have led to natural chicken and steak supply shortages. It can take longer to identify and secure relationships with suppliers meeting our criteria, and there are higher costs and other risks associated with purchasing naturally raised or sustainably grown ingredients. The growing time for naturally raised meat and sustainably grown vegetables can be longer. Herd losses can also be greater when animals are not treated with antibiotics and hormones and field losses can be higher for organically grown produce. Given the costs associated with natural and sustainable farming practices, and recently due to decreased demand as a result of the weak economic environment, many large suppliers have not found it economical to pursue business in this area.” -- taken from Chipotle's annual report.
Just to clear something up: I have no problem with organic or naturally produced food products. I am very proud to live in a country where I can buy whatever type of food I want: organic, natural, conventional, grass-fed, grain-fed, etc. However, I can't afford those products and quite frankly I know there isn't a difference between them and their conventionally produced contemporaries. However, I don't condemn those farmers who make a living in a way that is different to everyone else. If consumers want to pay higher prices for organic and natural, well then props to those producers who can provide it. All I'm saying is that one isn't better than the other and we shouldn't gang up on each other. We can all agree that Chipotle is definitely not portraying an accurate picture of food production and are also not using the products of which they're so proud to endorse. Honesty goes a long ways with Buzzard.

I haven't eaten Chipotle in five years. Seriously. Mostly because of their marketing schemes but also partly because I didn't really like the food anyway. I don't mean to punish producers who supply Chipotle with food but I just can't support a company that trounces on conventional agriculture so inappropriately and inaccurately. My pride and values won't let me.

There are other great commentaries on this commercial making their rounds on the internet - I encourage you to check them out!

Food Integrity Starts with Marketing Integrity - Daren Williams, NCBA
Chipotle, Your Grammy Commercial Still Doesn't Change My Mind - Crystal Young
http://storify.com/nicksargent/negative-reaction-to-chipotle-grammy-ad
Was Chipotle's Ad Eloquent or Ignorant? - Peggy Lowe, Harvest Public Media

Oh and let's not forget about Willie Nelson. Shame, shame on you for ruining Coldplay's song "Back to the Start" and for continuing to not be a friend of conventional agriculture.

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Thursday, February 9, 2012

BOLD with BEEF!


I love beef and now that I can be BOLD with beef, I've even more jazzed up about my favorite protein source.

BOLD stands for Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet. The Iowa Beef Industry Council has recently brought light to research conducted at Penn State University that showed eating lean beef daily in a heart-healthy diet reduced the 'bad' cholesterol (LDL) by 10%. Also, in the January issue of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition it was determined that substituting lean beef for white meat – improved heart disease risk factors across the board. Wowza! That's a pretty big deal.

So why all the beef about beef? Because it's February and next week is Valentine's Day!

Question - what is the absolute BEST way to show someone special how much you love them?

Answer - buy them steak.

This is a proven fact and therefore no discussion will be taken about facts. Beef is best. Bazinga.

Also, did you know that it's a leap year? Yep - 29 days and by no coincidence, there are also 29 cuts of lean beef for you to enjoy! My fellow advocate and friend, Jesse Bussard, has written a post about the 29 days 29 lean cuts epiphany and I think you should check it out.

So, directions for February:
1. Eat heart-healthy, lean beef everyday. For a list of the lean cuts, check here

2. On Valentine's Day take your sweetie out to a steak dinner - or buy steak and prepare it at home. That's what the hubsy and I are doing - but make sure you cook your beef to the proper temperatures!

3. Cheer for the Cats in our final few weeks of regular season play. This is also not up for discussion. Please do it (I even said please).

Have a great February and don't forget to enjoy lean, heart-healthy beef daily!

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~
For more info visit http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/bold.aspx

Monday, February 6, 2012

Agriculture Impressions

By now I'm sure you've seen the images of a milk jug or kernel of corn that have ag facts and messages contained within - here are a few to refresh your memory:


 
This one is probably my favorite. It's gorgeous and these two great men should be given more attention for their visionary leadership.

Not only are these images eye catching but they are riddled with ag facts for you to share with your friends and network! I've started saving them to my info folder so I can spout off agriculture information when I'm needing some conversation fodder! 

If you like these images, you can see quite a few more that will inspire you to continue to advocate for agriculture - just log on to Facebook and like the 'AgricultureImpressions' page and you can view them for yourself!

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~

Photo credits given to AGRICULTUREIMPRESSIONS

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Super Bowl Commercial Revealed!

We all know that the commercials that appear during the Super Bowl are supposed to be the best ones every year - they're the most expensive and are usually promoting products like Dr. Pepper, Doritos, Bud Light (which are the funniest in my opinion) and who can forget the E-Trade baby?

But this year there's going to be a new kid on the block in the form of a dairy commercial!

I don't want to spoil the fun so I'll only provide the link to the video here instead of embedding the video below. Or you can wait until Super Bowl Sunday to find out the 'dairy' good news!

Until next time,
~ Buzzard ~