Human beings have such a love of bacon that even our non-pig- consuming friends opt for turkey bacon and even bacon made of soy or other things. Personally, I take mine from the pig. However, under the mantra of not wanting to put garbage in my tummy, my family does not buy Smithfield products. Smithfield grows hogs in factory farms; that frankly offends me. The absolute last straw is allowing China to buy Smithfield. Do we now look forward to bacon that glows in the dark? China is notorious for having the worst record on food safety, in fact a deplorable record in product safety period. Does anyone remember the glowing drywall? Shuanghui Holding International, the Chinese company that is buying Smithfield, was embroiled in a food safety scandal for producing and selling pork laced with the banned veterinary drug clenbuterol, which is linked to serious human health risks.
I can’t think of too many ideas worse than China having control over one of the largest producers of hog products. Already 95% of hogs are raised on factory farms (gasp). As one article from Food and Water Watch put it, “we may export the pigs but we keep the millions of gallons of manure right here in U.S. hog raising communities in North Carolina and Iowa.” Now that’s a pleasant thought. You know the saying as happy as a pig in s#*%t? Perhaps China should take the s#*%t with the pigs. Even if they opted for that we still don’t want food safety regulations even looser than Monsanto run FDA (my opinion only folks) governing our bacon.
There are other reasons for my outrage at this proposed buyout. Small hog farms like small farms of any type are being run out of business by mega agribusinesses like Monsanto.
Speaking of Monsanto, I don’t know if you spied the articles appearing in European newspapers in which Putin of Russia suggested that Obama administration refusal to curtail Monsanto’s push of Round-Up and other Monsanto monstrosities as the possible start of World War III. Snopes says this is “False” and I quote, “It stretches credulity to the extreme to imagine that, out of the myriad of political issues involving the U.S. and Russia, Vladimir Putin’s foremost concern is the death of some bee colonies — and so much so that Putin was reportedly willing to risk the rupturing of diplomatic relations with the U.S. by forcing the American secretary of state to cool his heels for three hours and then threatening to go to war over the issue. In fact, there is no evidence that Secretary Kerry and President Putin discussed Monsanto at all during their meeting, and, of course, no one has yet produced the “shocking minutes [of the meeting] released in the Kremlin” that supposedly document these incredible claims.”
I beg your pardon; sure war over the bee issue is a bit extreme but let us not forget the importance of the bee population to the food supply. You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone: A Bee story. Bees pollinate crops such as apples, cranberries, melons and broccoli. Some crops, including blueberries and cherries, are 90-percent dependent on honey bee pollination; one crop, almonds, depends entirely on the honey bee for pollination at bloom time. In the scheme of things annihilation of humans through very destructive warfare is not an option. Slow annihilation of so many of our food crops by the unwarranted and irresponsible use of products like Round-Up should also not be an option. If I had to guess, I would say Monsanto is cooking up artificial bee pollination; waiting to slap a patent on it and just damn the bees! China is drooling over non-real honey baked ham that glows in the dark at your dinner table. Yum!