As I try to weed through all of the blog posts, social media rants, and issues with Subway restaurants newest take on antibiotics and not using meat from animals treated with antibiotics I have come to some realizations.
First as a nation we are very lucky to have the choice of when, where, and who we want to buy our food from. If I want to buy all organic foods I have that choice, gluten-free – yes, locally raised vegetables – you bet. There are countless different grocery stores, markets, CSA’s, farms, etc that we can choose to buy our food from. Now some of these options cost more than others and that price simply takes certain customers out of the equation. Either way there are many different markets for us to get our groceries and meals.
This year through out Minnesota we have been very lucky with our growing season and harvest. The fall harvest of corn and soybeans has been great with perfect weather conditions leading to great yields and there for providing us with an over abundance of materials for the consumer. The biggest draw back with this large harvest and increased yields leads to a supply and demand issue. Too much supply leads to a low demand and gives us lower prices (thanks to my Macro and Micro Economics professors at South Dakota State University that engraved this in my head). Hopefully the abundance will lead to new opportunities to export our grains to other countries.
Now back to the main issue for me; if Subway wants to not buy meat from farmers that raise their livestock using antibiotics I take offense and it’s also a bit misleading. Farmers and ranchers use antibiotics to treat and prevent disease in livestock and lets them eat and utilize feed better. Also ALL meat sold in the U.S. is technically antibiotic free as there are withdrawals on livestock antibiotics before they can be sold to harvest. What I believe Subway is trying to say is that they don’t plan on buying meat from farmers who have used any antibiotics on their animals. Although some farmers choose that way of tending to their livestock the majority of commercial farmers do use them and for good reasons
I just find it hard to support a company that doesn’t support your average farm; it doesn’t matter if it’s Chipotle, Panera Bread, Subway, or what ever the given chain might be. I
With that said, we all have a need for sustenance, no matter what you want to eat we are blessed to live in a nation where we do have choice. Count your blessings and be thankful for the bountiful harvest that we’ve had in 2015 and think of those in other places who are not so lucky. When it all comes down to it we are very lucky to have what we need.
Please consider following this blog and leaving a comment, I’m interested in hearing from other people on what they feel on this subject and everything else to do with agriculture.