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View Diary: Antibiotics used in livestock: Making us even sicker than we thought (120 comments)

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  •  You seem to be making the case that corn is fed (1+ / 0-)
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    exclusively.  It's not.  It is accompanied by hay, silage, and other roughage which is how bloat is prevented.  Rumensin prevents coccidiosis and aids in the appetite which, in turn, means less days on feed because they gain faster.  Tylosin helps prevent abscessed livers, again, less days on feed.

    400 pound calves entering a feedlot stay for at least 10 months, if not longer, and do very well on the rations.

    Micheal Pollan makes a lot of great sounding arguements.  Too often, in my opinion, he has figured out an answer and then backtracked for supporting data.

    •  You're making my points for me. (0+ / 0-)

      Rumensin (aka monensin) is an antibiotic.
      Tylosin is an antibiotic.

      By the time a modern American beef cow is six months old, it has seen its last blade of grass for the rest of its life. As soon as they wean, they spend the first six months out on the pasture with their moms, nursing, nibbling grass. The mom is converting the grass's protein that's turning into milk for the animal, doing the way they've done it for millions of years. We take them off grass. We put them in pens, called backgrounding pens, and we teach them how to eat something that they are not evolved to eat, which is grain, and mostly corn.

      You start giving them antibiotics, because as soon as you give them corn, you've disturbed their digestion, and they're apt to get sick, so you then have to give them drugs. That's how you get in this whole cycle of drugs and meat. By feeding them what they're not equipped to eat well, we then go down this path of technological fixes, and the first is the antibiotics. Once they start eating the [corn], they're more vulnerable. They're stressed, so they're more vulnerable to all the different diseases cows get. But specifically they get bloat, which is just a horrible thing to happen. They stop ruminating.

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