Thursday, May 28, 2015

Country of Origin Labeling

These are places where American food is grown


Are you one of those people? Who read every label and peruse every sticker on every single bag of fruit or package of vegetables or Styrofoam container of sausages to see where the food originated?

I am and I don't regret it one bit.

We have good friends who farm in this area

I want to know that when I serve a bowl of strawberries to Peggy or bite into a crisp Granny Smith that it was grown by American farmers and picked and shipped and processed under American food safety regulations.

Having been a dairy farmer for the majority of my life, working in what may be one of the most regulated of food industries, I have first hand knowledge of what goes into making our food safe....I have been forced by milk inspectors to pressure wash the gutter behind the cows......I know ten thousand ways to clean a bulk tank and keep it that way.

Having been an ag  columnist for 17 years I have learned a lot about what is done to inspect food being imported. There is NO comparison! A lot of food that comes into this country comes in on a sort of honor inspection here and there, but by no means ubiquitous oversight.

It is one thing to import from neighboring nations that also work under stringent rules....but our new food trading buddies are going to be Pacific Rim nations...possibly including..... you know....China....thanks to the TPP

Those stickers and labels are probably going bye-bye. Since the World Trade Organization has once again struck down US COOL laws and Congress is scurrying to comply, I have one simple, homegrown solution to not wanting my apples and chicken to come from China...where we all know feed safety is not exactly paramount.

We are making plans to remove the old cement sink that clutters up the back porch and buy another freezer. We already raise our own beef, turkeys, get venison off our own land, and grow and freeze a lot of vegetables. We get strawberries locally and apples and other things we don't yet grow ourselves.

Black locust in bloom Town of Glen

Once the old sink is gone we are going shopping for another medium-sized freezer. Storage space has been one of the constraints holding us back from growing more of our own....we can fix that.

Jade's grandpa is giving him his rototiller, which makes expanding the gardens quite possible. 

A river flats cornfield in the Town of Glen

We can do this.

And Congress and their donors and their caving in to world interests at the expense of American interests can all go to Hell.

Maybe this little farm can't feed the world, but we can sure go a long way towards feeding ourselves.

Some tasty food stories for your enjoyment and enlightenment:

Donkey Meat recalled
It hasn't worked for Mexico
Or pets

The Chinese stories...horror stories that is....never end.

Yummy....we can get chicken there now
And pork (Meanwhile on American dairy farms water sources are inspected several times a year and water samples pulled and tested by official inspectors)

I could do this all day. The stories of tainted food from countries that will now be our best buddy trading partners and won't have to say so on the packaging are everywhere you care to look. Overseas newspapers are on them like white on rice so to speak. You won't see much here.


Throwback at Trapper Creek said...

Freezers are like potato chips, you can't have just one! We have 5! Right now the berries are coming in like crazy and folks are still buying the wooden ones at the grocery store...I overheard a woman saying the Oregon berries are "too sweet."

jan said...

We're watching thousands of acres that used to feed the world dry up because of environment and government regulations while thousands of gallons of water are flushed into the ocean. The country is insane.

Anonymous said...

You are so blessed to be able to live off your little piece of heaven right there! And thank you for posting all this as it makes us aware of what not to buy and why not. I love the photos of your heaven on earth there, and just played my chicken video again and lamb one. Thank you for posts like this which are so informative about how things really are. It makes us all realize how much we take our food and the grower for granted. Blessings and Love to you all there in your oasis...from here on mine in NE mn......Love and blessings, Merri

ellie k said...

My son in law (a farmer) does not allow his wife to buy fruit from out of the country, there are very few regulations about insect ides in other countries, there are no toilets available for the workers so there is no need to leave the field to take care of business. Even my grand daughter reads the labels in stores and loudly announces where fruit if from and we cannot buy this mommy. You are lucky to be able to grow most of your food.

Cathy said...

I'm almost sorry I went to those links. OMG.
And Amen! to this statement:
"And Congress and their donors and their caving in to world interests at the expense of American interests can all go to Hell."

Uta said...

I do grow a lot of food myself and also buy from local farmers markets, which are popping up everywhere now. I bless all the little farmers and their land.

threecollie said...

Nita, we do have two, but one is in the cellar and very inconvenient. We store the stuff we are not in a hurry for like doggy bones down there. Can't imagine not liking local berries!! Strawberries will be ready any day now here and I can't wait!

Jan, you are exactly right. I have been writing and writing and writing about that in the Farm Side, but I am sure it will never reach anyone who can make a difference. It is a crime to waste all that potential food while people are going broke and hungry.

Merrri, we are fortunate indeed and grateful too. Thanks for your kind words.

Ellie, I am so worried about losing those labels because of the WTO. I have lost all respect for the United Nations and am appalled that our Congress and even the national Farm Bureau are going along with them. State and local Farm Bureaus need to rise up and tell national that we want our food protected!

Cathy, the worst part about those links is that I have dozens of them and can find more any time I look! While people are congregating at the water cooler, worried about flat footballs, this is being perpetrated on a country with some of the strictest farm regulations in the world. You can bet that if you tried to grow shrimp that way here you'd hear about it!

Uta, I am so grateful to live where we can grow our own or buy from our neighbors. Liz is thinking about doing turkeys again this year and asked if folks were interested enough to give her a deposit so she isn't stuck with a lot of unsold birds, as it is expensive to raise them. We were shocked how quickly people agreed to sign up!

Terry and Linda said...

It just makes me sick. The regs and rules we live with as farmers (and ranchers) is daunting. We KNOW that China has killed pets, made babies sick and STILL ....oh, I guess I had better stop. You said it the best.


ellie k said...

We wash all produce with running water, melons and the squash family we wash with dish soap andn water.

threecollie said...

Ellie, we do too! In fact I scrub the heck out of melons with a brush or scrubber after all the scares. I don't even really like to buy them at the supermarket at all. In mid-summer we can get them in a county a few miles to the north of us. They grow a kind of cantaloupe developed there called "Hand Melons" after the farmer who bred them I believe. They are big, ribbed things with flavor beyond belief and are picked in fields we can see from where we park the car. I love melon but I would rather wait for the Hand Melons than take my chances with the store. Sad isn't it?


give me a coconut and a hammer.