Smithfield Goes to the China

Published on: 10:40AM May 29, 2013

As a trading partner China is nothing if not self-interested. So maybe if they own one of the biggest pork processors in the U.S., they’ll be more inclined to relax the rules they’ve used to limit our access. Maybe.

Has the Grill Cooled?

In what can’t be good news as we try to unload this high priced meat on a still-pennywise public, the NPD group says its survey indicates grilling has lost some of its momentum.

First We Murder Them. Then We Mutilate Them. Then We Eat Them.

Henry Walker of Mocksville, N.C., makes a point about the COOL labels that had escaped us.

"I would like the word slaughter on the cool label changed to 'processed' as it would have the same meaning, but not put bad images in the general public’s mind. It would be nice for you to write an article about the label and how terms, phrases, and words that are okay in the farming community are not okay to use before the general public. PR work is some of the most important work we do as farmers in today’s world, but we need to be reminded to be careful what we say to the general public because it will bite us in a hurry."

Saul Alinsky, in his "Rules for Radicals," devoted a chapter to the importance of word choices in politics. The animal rights movement has taken heed. Hence, they talk about "animal flesh" rather than meat, and things like animals "surrounded by their own excrement." Fortunately for them, they don’t have to be too creative, because we’ve done most of the work for them.
Not only do we "slaughter" "fat" cattle at "slaughter houses," but once they’re slaughtered, we divide them into "carcasses" and "offal" and offer them for sale to people who, by and large, regard their dogs as more human than their children.

Should we be spending more time trying to change our verbal habits? Calling a spade a spade is fine, but probably not good marketing if your customer is looking for a shovel.

Pacelle: Our Hands Are Clean

Speaking of the importance of words and the value of nuance, here’s an update on Rep. Luetkemeyer’s efforts to bring the HSUS to justice and a response from the bossman at the organization. He says they just spend 5% of their money on "lobbying." He doesn’t tell us how much they spend on, shall we call it, "legislative education" to get bills approved around the country.

The Fulton Sun on Mr. Luetkemeyer;

And Mr. Pacelle's response, ad provided free by the Shreveport no expense there, either.

More Bits from the Net

Making Peace with Meat

Mark Bittman does goes on doesn’t he? This morning he says a bit of a shoulder of lamb would be OK if it tastes good enough and is consumed with the proper sauces and such. This is not a story we’d spend a free reader chit on if we didn’t subscribe.

When the Papers Are Full of 'High-Priced Beef' News

It’s good to see that consumer confidence is recovering a bit.

Attack on Monsanto.

Another—ANOTHER—Story on the Promise of 'Printed' Meat

We don’t know if Modern Meadows will ever be able to make meat in the lab, but they can darn sure get themselves some publicity.

Having the Beef Conversation

Here's how to start one.

Excellence in Journalism

PBS provides us with another good excuse to eat steak.