Fewer Herb Acres & Beef Recall

Fewer Herb Acres & Beef Recall

Fewer Herb Acres & Beef Recall plus Food Forethought. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Northwest Report.

Even though we import far more of our herbs and spices than we produce, the nation's farmers still maintain a small herb and spice industry, predominately in the northwest but acreage has been declining according to USDA economist, Michelle DaPra.

DAPRA: In 2007 Farm Service Agency numbers were 110-thousand acres which was a decline of 10% from 2006. In 2008, 80-thousand acres which is a decline of 27%. We suspect the economic slowdown has caused the demand for herbs and spices to decrease due to lower discretionary spending from consumers and lower food service demand in general in the marketplace.

Some 390 tons of ground beef produced by a California meat packer, some of it nearly two years ago, is being recalled for fear of potentially deadly E. coli bacterium tainting, U.S. officials said on Monday. The beef was produced by Huntington Meat Packing Inc of Montebello, California, and shipped mainly to California outlets, An initial problem, in ground beef shipped by the plant from January 5 to January 15, was discovered during a regular safety check, no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of the recalled products.

Now with today’s Food Forethought, here’s Lacy Gray.

I can’t help wondering where the critics of farming, ranching and agriculture in general think their food comes from. I would love to be able to follow them around as they do their grocery shopping, slapping their hand every time they reach for a food item with a very audible A, A, A; that was grown by those you loathe. Since when did farming and ranching become something shameful? Shame on those agriculture critics who lump all farmers and ranchers into one big pot of mud for slinging. It’s not right and it’s not fair to the history of farming, but it does sell books and documentaries. Most of these critics seem to think that we should turn over food production and the modern farming system to communal farms. Do you suppose they bothered to do a survey on how many people would be ready and willing to work the additional hours above and beyond their regular day jobs that it would take to be able to create enough food to feed individual communities across a nation? Community gardens are truly wonderful, providing opportunities for social interaction, community development and nutritious food, but they will not and cannot feed an entire nation let alone the world.

Thanks Lacy. That’s today’s Northwest Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Northwest Ag Information Network.

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