Saturday, May 28, 2016

Where would you draw the line?

The food we eat is always an interesting topic of discussion and internet articles. Eat meat, don't eat meat, don't eat animal one point it's all good for you and the next nothing is good for you! I grew up surrounded by farmers and working on my grandparent's (maternal and paternal) farms. We raised sheep, chickens, turkeys, pheasants and cows in the fields/barns, and rainbow trout in the dugouts. Horses were there to work not to be eaten. Also wheat and huge vegetable gardens. I was taught to treat animals with respect, have them in a healthy environments with grass, fresh air and lots of space. This is what I knew and where I figured most food came from.
When I started 'adulting' I realized the horror of most of the meat sold in stores. The internet bombards you with videos and pictures of how animals are tortured, what type of life they must endure just so we can eat them. I adore animals and know the maltreatment is out there, I don't need it shoved in my face every day! It is unfair that some animals are treated so poorly and it is not frowned upon as much as other animals. Then reality kicks in, would we be able to meet the demand for food in North America if all the meat were raised free range? I do my part, we still raise cows on the family farm so once every 6 months or so a cow is butchered for the family. A cow that spent it's life in an open field eating grass and good hey, not doped up on medication and antibiotics surrounded by disease. A cow that is suddenly shot in the field while grazing and in a relaxed state. I source chicken and bison meat from local farms, I try and buy wild salmon and I tend to avoid pork for my day to day menu. If I buy pork it is usually tenderloin or sausage and from free range pigs. Alright...I do buy the low sodium bacon from Costco...and beef sirloin burgers...and beef hotdogs...shhhhh.

All that being said, this picture is what fueled my thoughts today. I find it interesting that every country/culture would draw their line differently. Even people within the same demographic would draw their line in a different spot due to their upbringing. My line would be between the rabbit and the dog. I do, however, feel the rabbit and horse should switch places on this scale. Growing up we ate rabbit, whether it was hunted or farmed, rabbit stew was not abnormal. We also ate duck and lamb, speaking of which where is the sheep in this picture?
My North American farming upbringing taught us that horses were for work and often a type of pet. However my European background taught me differently. Horse meat could be bought at the deli and was eaten as any deli meat would be. Even looking at myself, two cultures collide to create a different opinion than the majority.
I know someone who was in another country, I wish I could remember where he went, and the family he was staying with went and picked up a dog. They spent mid day with the dog, then killed it and cooked it for supper that night. I know people who ship in cat meat for special occasions and another who eats Guinea pig. Where would you draw the line?

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