I grew up on a farm. After a happy childhood with lots of space and fresh air, as a teenager I enjoyed eating two chops with red cabbage and mashed potatoes. Meat was seen as a piece of vitality, as the agricultural marketing company at the time made clear to the people.
Pork is also said to be high in B vitamins. I didn’t really care, I was full and satisfied. The pigs were doing very well with us too: They received muesli made from freshly crushed, in-house grain and had enough space to move around freely. And today?
In 2015, the WHO cancer researchers declared red meat, i.e. lean meat from beef, pork, sheep, horse or goat to be likely to be carcinogenic and processed red meat to be definitely carcinogenic. It is in the same category as smoking. Processed means salted, fermented, smoked or cured. The nitrite salt used is converted into carcinogenic nitrosamines by stomach acid. These also occur when meat is overheated in the pan and on the grill.
Meat affects the intestinal flora: Aggressive bacteria develop, which can cause inflammation and, in the long term, colon cancer. So meat is not just a piece of life force. If you eat it in large quantities and then as sausage, ham or hamburger, the risk of developing cancer increases. That does something on my appetite. But as I said: regularly and in larger quantities. But we also have a big appetite: We eat twice as much meat as a hundred years ago: Germans knock away 60 kilos of animal a year. What for? Because we move so much physically? Certainly not.
Even if the annual meat consumption remains stable, the sales of meat substitute products also increase. People are rethinking: against the agricultural industry, for animal welfare. And now also for the climate. Surely that could affect sales of meat and meat products. To counteract this development, a study is being organized: the all-clear. Keep eating red meat. A closer look reveals the lead author of the study, Bradley Johnston. As early as 2016, he “found out” that sugar does not make you sick: the study’s sponsors are said to have been McDonalds and Pepsi. The US agricultural lobby has campaigned for the meat study and has put a lot of money into it. The result is not really surprising.
Pork lard, liver sausage, bacon and pork, but also poultry thighs, are bursting with arachidonic acid. It promotes inflammatory processes. If you want to protect yourself from this, you should avoid pork products and chicken legs.
Pork, beef, sheep and goat have long since stopped getting muesli from their own production
Instead, soy from South America is bought from the agricultural industry and the rainforest is flattened for this. There is a simple solution for the consumer who does not want this: buy organic meat. The origin of the feed from local countries is already certain. Even if you’ve heard it before, it’s always frightening: Around 50 percent of the grain harvest and 90% of the soybean harvest end up in our feed trough instead of on the table of the people where it is grown.
What is the new animal welfare label in the supermarket all about?
The label in the large supermarket chains differentiates between four types of housing: 1 stands for stable housing, which applies to 90% of German fresh meat. The legal requirements of 0.75 m2 of space for a 100 kilo pig and 1.8 m2 for a cattle weighing over 220 kilos apply. Level 2 stable housing plus indicates that pigs have 10% more space and are given organic occupational material. The calves may only be dehorned by a farmer with painkillers in the first 6 weeks, and only by a veterinarian at a later point in time.