In a recent exchange with a vegetarian friend I have, she told me that she is, "just a girl who does not believe in killing animals (or any living creature) and using their discharge as a resource." I will admit that the cause shared by her and others in our society is a seemingly noble one. After all, if I had never stepped foot on a ranch and my only source of information were hyped up videos by PETA and HSUS or inaccurate opinion reporting like the recent antibiotic story done by Katie Couric on CBS, then I, too, might be persuaded to cross over and eliminate meat and dairy from the diet. However, I think it's time we start providing accurate information to our consumers, and it's going to take each and every one of us to get the job done.
After receiving this email about not using animals as a resource, I posted this reply on my Facebook profile, "I ♥ beef cattle because they provide all of us (even vegans) with the essentials to a good life: nutrition, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, deodorant, crayons, stearic acid in my tires, printing ink, asphalt, candles, soaps, shaving cream, detergents, plastics, pet food, toothpaste, fabric softeners...and the list could go on. Beef by-products enable us to use 99% of every beef animal, everything except the moo!"
Animal by-products enrich our every day lives, and this is the message I want to spread today. Vegetarians and vegans may think they are "saving animals" by leaving meat off the center of their dinner plates, but the truth of the matter is, we all need and use beef by-products multiple times throughout the day, and we don't even realize it! This was actually the topic of my speech when I won the National Beef Ambassador Contest in 2006, and it's one that I'm incredibly passionate about.
For some BEEF Daily readers, you may think I'm preaching to the choir by writing this on the blog today, and maybe I am. However, I have discovered that I'm quickly gaining a following of readers from the "opposition," and I hope they are paying particular attention today. I'm looking forward to hearing a response from consumers and ranchers alike. My challenge today for all of you is to spread the positive message about beef by-products through emails, Facebook, Twitter, blogs and in one-on-one conversations. Then, come back to the blog and share your success stories. Good luck!
BEEF Daily Quick Fact: (Some frequently used medical products made from beef by-products include trypsin (for cleansing wounds and ulcers), corticotrophin (for treating allergies, arthritis and respiratory diseases), iron (for treating anemia), thrombin (for blood coagulation), and a huge range of other valuable pharmaceutical products. (Source: More Than a Cow)