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At WholeFoods Market: Grass fed vs. Vegetarian fed?

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  • At WholeFoods Market: Grass fed vs. Vegetarian fed?

    What exactly does "vegetarian fed" meat mean? It seems to me that the vagueness in wording is somehow...purposely that way. It pisses me off. Why are people always trying to pull a fast one on people, or cut corners and try to get more for less. I'm not into deception; so what does this term mean, exactly?

    I asked the butcher (guy) at the WF. He said "Oh yes it's good." I said "what's in it?". He said mostly corn. That is what I gathered, and he mumbled something else and trailed off. So ...corn. Which is pretty much just as problematic as grains. Its nutritionally deficient, hard to digest, and jacks up the omega 6's in the animal being eaten. The only plusses is that it is hormone and antibiotic free. That I am thankful for.
    So, am I spot on for this vegetarian fed thing? Am I missing something? Can somebody explain exactly what this means, if I've missed it?

    They did have a grass fed section. But that meat was nearly 3x the price of anything else! Howcome it is feeling impossible to afford good, clean food?

    Thanks

  • #2
    I would think 'vegetarian fed' really means 'stuffed with corn and soy and maybe also wheat'. I would avoid it if you can, and go for grass-fed.

    It does truly suck: the most nutritious food is also the most expensive in a lot of cases. All we can do is budget, go for cheaper cuts like beef shin or chicken thighs, sacrifice money in other areas of life, and hope that this movement becomes mainstream enough to have a positive effect on the price of good quality food.

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    • #3
      Stuff with corn/fed corn is cheaper because corn is cheap and subsidized by governments all over the world. Watch Food, Inc. or King Corn.
      Liberalism: ideas so good they have to be mandatory.

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      • #4
        The money that you aren't spending on packaged/processed foods makes it easier to budget this stuff in I found.

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        • #5
          Vegetarian fed generally means grains, corn, or soy - but without bits of other cows ground up into their meal (a concern after the mad cow disease issues some years back). It's not a good choice, but if it was a choice between unmarked factory-farmed or marked vegetarian-fed, it's a lesser evil.

          I'd go for grass-fed though.

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          • #6
            Can you find a local farm and buy from them? I buy from a place that does pastured beef, chicken, pork and lamb. Premium cuts- strip steaks/lamb chops run $15/lb, cheaper cuts are $6-$8, ground beef is $5 lb. It means their animals eat grass. From birth to death. They are not finished on a lot. They said it is less fatty than normal meat.

            http://maggiesfeast.wordpress.com/
            Check out my blog. Hope to share lots of great recipes and ideas!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by PrimalStewart View Post
              What exactly does "vegetarian fed" meat mean? Thanks
              It means not this:
              In a 1997 article in US NEWS & WORLD REPORT, we learned that animal-feed manufacturers and farmers were also experimenting with dehydrated food garbage — fats emptied from restaurant fryers and grease traps, cement-kiln dust, newsprint and cardboard derived from plant cellulose, and even human sewage sludge.
              Cattle Feed, What They Don’t Want You to Know.

              There has been some regulation as to what one can feed a steer, to avoid abuses that may have occurred. However, the lack of regulation in our food industry is such that I'm willing to spend a bit more for my food I know if from a quality source.

              Only 9 percent of downer cattle (animals that cannot walk, exhibit symptoms of neurological disease, and/or that die or are killed for reasons other than routine slaughter) are tested in the United States compared to 100 percent in the European Union and Japan.
              U.S. Beef Industry Facts | The Center for Food Safety
              Retirement has afforded me the ultimate affluence, that of free time (Sahlins/Wells)

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              • #8
                Originally posted by HeatherJ View Post
                I would think 'vegetarian fed' really means 'stuffed with corn and soy and maybe also wheat'.
                Just like human vegetarians

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                • #9
                  If you are looking at eggs, know that while cattle are vegetarians, chickens are not. Either way it means an unnatural, cheap diet.
                  Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by magnolia1973 View Post
                    Can you find a local farm and buy from them? I buy from a place that does pastured beef, chicken, pork and lamb. Premium cuts- strip steaks/lamb chops run $15/lb, cheaper cuts are $6-$8, ground beef is $5 lb. It means their animals eat grass. From birth to death. They are not finished on a lot. They said it is less fatty than normal meat.
                    This is my next move magnolia, good call on it. I live in the Richmond VA area...guess I have to do some scouting around a bit. Thanks for the suggestion. How did you find your local farm?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by PrimalStewart View Post
                      How did you find your local farm?
                      Go to localharvest.org. They list all the farms and farmers markets in the area.

                      Better yet, do a google search for "Richmond VA farmer's markets." Almost every city council runs a farmer's market, and many times, the website for the city farmer's market includes links to the vendor farmer's websites. If the meat is grass fed, the farm site will state it proudly.

                      I also turned this up: Buy Local Virginia You'll need to search for your county.

                      EDIT: I did a bit of digging. In Henrico county there's a Simply Abundant Farm: http://www.simply-abundant.com/ which has pastured chicken and lamb. Looks like you can go to them, or go to the 17th Street Market. There's a Longhorn & Lager Butcher in Midlothian which sells "corn and grass fed" ground beef. I guess you'd have to ask about that.

                      Also be aware that a lot of markets are not open in winter. You may have to wait until spring.
                      Last edited by oxide; 01-17-2012, 09:53 AM.
                      5'0" female, 45 years old. Started Primal October 31, 2011, at a skinny fat 111.5 lbs. Low weight: 99.5 lb on a fast. Gained back to 115(!) on SAD chocolate, potato chips, and stress. Currently 111.

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                      • #12
                        Eat Wild is another good resource to find farmers close to you.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by magnolia1973 View Post
                          Can you find a local farm and buy from them? I buy from a place that does pastured beef, chicken, pork and lamb. Premium cuts- strip steaks/lamb chops run $15/lb, cheaper cuts are $6-$8, ground beef is $5 lb. It means their animals eat grass. From birth to death. They are not finished on a lot. They said it is less fatty than normal meat.
                          Better yet, get a freezer and buy the whole animal (or 1/2). My grassfed beef with everything from 2 packages of filet to 80lbs of ground beef worked out to $3.90/lb just for muscle meat. It's a bit less if you include the weight of the liver, heart, and suet.

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                          • #14
                            Corn and soy for vegetarians.

                            Originally posted by JennaRose View Post
                            Just like human vegetarians
                            Well informed "human vegetarians" normally are very careful to avoid corn and soy products. As a vegetarian, I don't use either. The vast majority of corn (approximately 90 percent) in the United States is genetically modified to contain internal poisons that kill invading insects and also resist and overtake pollens from non-GMO varieties. Genetically modified foods now make up approximately three-quarters of our diet; however, one will not know this because food processors are not required to label food products to let us know this. In the natural primitive environment, people ate very little animal protein; thus, we are still trying to genetically 'learn" the evolution of consuming large amounts of animal protein while surviving the process. Cattle are not at all predisposed to eating any amount of animal protein. They are a grazing species. Large amounts of grains are very unnatural as a dietary base for cattle. It simply doesn't occur in nature. Cattle also have not genetically "learned" to adapt to this diet of grain. This is why the meat of grain fed beef is found to be so inferior to grass fed. As humans, we are very good at manipulating those things that improve our short term survival needs. The problem occurs when this ability is combined with the modern marketing of those survival needs. We want beef within one year of birth to be processed, preserved, transported, colored, on the shelf and ready for the grill and we want it to be healthful. The formula simply can't work in the long term.

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                            • #15
                              "Vegatarian fed" means the animals have been fed ground up vegetarians. Which seems kind of cruel given how stringy and bony most vegetarians look.

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