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Feb 15, 2014 11:16 AM

Why would someone decide to avoid all food products made in the States?

Okay, here is a question that has been bothering me for a while.

Recently, while helping out at an after school program where a snack is provided, one of the kids indicated that her parents instructed her to avoid food products made in the States (we are in Canada). Consequently, she skipped the particular cereal that was served on that day.

I understand preferences for dairy-free, organic etc., but what can possibly cause such a decision to avoid US-produced food products? (As an aside, I don't even think it is realistic to expect being able to avoid such foods, in a public setting where food sourcing and preparation is done through multiple people).

The belief that there is more GMO or chemicals in US food production? Not that I think it is true ;-)

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  1. whether YOU think that it is true, is not the issue.
    many things are allowed here because of the revolving door of personnel between our government and monstanto about which people in other countries are wary.

    (i feel the same way about foodstuffs that come from china.)

    if i can buy the same item from a country that doesn't permit GMOs or a country that does, i'll go with the product of the non-gmo country.
    why would i CHOSE to buy "roundup ready" food if i have a choice? why would i chose to buy meat that has been fed GMO corn if i can get meat that has been grass fed with grass that is not covered with roundup?

    18 Replies
    1. re: westsidegal

      "why would i chose to buy meat that has been fed GMO corn if i can get meat that has been grass fed with grass that is not covered with roundup?"

      Considering the result of "covering grass in Roundup" (contrasted below), exactly HOW do you feed said grass to any animal??? How about we forgo the hyperbole and stick to a fact-based discussion.

      1. re: PotatoHouse

        The evidence is clear to anyone who takes the time to research this. She is most definitely NOT talking hyperbole here, more like naivete on your part.

        As an example, Russia, of all countries, has banned GMO's from the country. In the USA, Monsanto and its cronies control Congress and thus, we have GMO food.

        1. re: Enigma3

          How is it possible to feed livestock with grass that has been covered in Roundup?

          1. re: John E.

            Roundup kills grass. Quickly. I do not accept the validity of that story at all. What are they feeding the cows? Dead grass? I ascribe to the idea that all information released by big agra companies is pure propaganda, designed to boost their profit margins at our expense.

            1. re: Enigma3

              I grew up in farm country. My family owns 230 acres of woodland and farmland. A local cattleman cuts 'grass', which is actually clover and alfalfa since grass does not have as enough nutrients to adequately nourish cattle.

              There are three cuttings a year. If Roundup is sprayed on the fields then the plants die and cannot be cut, raked, and baled to feed the cattle. Why did you require an explanation of p grass fed beef is not fed grass that is 'covered with Roundup'?

              1. re: John E.

                I may be wrong, but I believe all 3 of us are saying the same thing; It is IMPOSSIBLE to feed livestock grasses that are "covered with Roundup".

                1. re: PotatoHouse

                  you are correct about what i was saying.
                  if you look at my post i contrasted CORN that was covered with roundup with grass that is NOT covered with roundup.

                  i stated that i'd prefer to get the meat that fed on GRASS that was NOT covered with roundup.

                  1. re: westsidegal

                    If corn was covered with Roundup it too would die. Since there is no grass that is covered with Roundup that is fed to cattle, your point is pointless.

                    1. re: John E.

                      Monsanto produces genetically modified corn that isn't harmed by roundup, only the surrounding weeds are. That is the other sides "point".

                        1. re: John E.

                          John E. another point about which you are completely incorrect.
                          GMO roundup ready corn does NOT die when covered with roundup.
                          the WHOLE POINT of making the corn "roundup ready" is to allow it to live despite being blanketed with tremendous amounts of roundup.

                          1. re: westsidegal

                            In this context 'covered' and 'blanketed with tremendous amounts' are emotionally loaded descriptions, not concrete quantitative ones. It's quite likely that that you and John use 'covered' in very different senses.

                            1. re: westsidegal

                              Well, not tremendous amounts...but yes, it will survive within certain parameters. Roundup will still kill crops that have been modified to accept it if you use too much.

                      1. re: John E.

                        John, I don't doubt you grew up in farm country...I also have no doubt you're not in the business and most likely moved away long ago.

                        There are several crops that have been genetically modified to accept broadcast applications of glyphosate (read: Roundup). Alfalfa is one of those crops.

                        Roundup Ready alfalfa can be sprayed with Roundup and survive as healthy as it was before application.

                        1. re: JayL

                          How does it handle agent orange?

                    2. re: John E.

                      Easily. RR, GMO crops can be sprayed with Glyphosate without damage.

                  2. re: PotatoHouse

                    Roundup Ready crops are not damaged by Glyphosates.

                    There are pasture crops, such as Alfalfa, that are RR.

                    That is the fact in this fact-based discussion.

                  3. re: westsidegal

                    Better hope "Clarabell Grass Fed" isn't consuming water near a field using glyphosate on a neighboring farm .... Glyphosate can be present in surface water.

                  4. I know people who avoid all food products made in China, but in US? Never heard of it. Maybe it's a political statement.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: PeterL

                      I agree. That's what it sounds like to me.

                    2. My guess would be that it is to avoid GMO crops and hormones/anti-biotics in meat/dairy production. That's just a guess. If that is the case, it seems to be a little mis-guided. Are there GMO labelling laws in Canada? If not, a manufacturer could buy cheap US GMO corn and turn it into "Made in Canada" breakfast cereal.

                      20 Replies
                      1. re: seamunky

                        That is pretty much my thoughts too. And no, there are no regulations for GMO labelling in Canada. =

                        1. re: seamunky

                          Here we go again. It is not legal to treat livestock intended for human consumption with hormones in the U.S.

                          1. re: John E.

                            Thanks for that clarification. rBGH is allowed in dairy production, right?

                            1. re: seamunky

                              You got me on that one. Dairy cows make up less than 10% of U.S. beef production.

                              1. re: John E.

                                John E. you are absolutely incorrect on this.
                                cattle in the US most assuredly MAY be treated with hormones.

                                1. re: John E.

                                  Your are mistaken. Cattle may be treated with hormones, poultry may not.

                                  1. re: pikawicca

                                    As if they aren't doing some jumping around and under said regulations that they helped put in to feed the animals "so not hormones and crap" so they can get away with their disgusting practices.

                                2. re: seamunky

                                  If you desire to live a healthy rest of your life, you will avoid GMO food at all costs. there are recent threads on this topic that I posted on which put this topic in perspective. You may want to read those threads to get "the other side" of the story and a good dose of reality. GMO's are not pretty.

                                  1. re: Enigma3

                                    All of our foodstuff were genetically modified over the years. The current fruits and vegetables bear very little resemblances to their forebears thousands of years ago.

                                    Humans can't just stop tampering with good ol' Mother nature :)

                                    1. re: Roland Parker

                                      There is a difference between hybrids and GMOs.

                                      There is a difference between cross pollination and protein replacement.

                                      1. re: Roland Parker

                                        Humans bear little resemblance to their forebears of a million or so years ago. Genetic change is natural, and humans are a part of nature, even when they intervene in the process of genetic modification.

                                    2. re: seamunky

                                      Every time I think I understand what Agrobusiness is adding to the food they sell, I discover they are doing something not labeled and not anything I wish to eat. An example is the additive they give to pigs right before slaughter that causes them to have more lean meat and less fat. It also turns out to cause their bones to break if they aren't killed right away. That is just one chemical in a horror of chemicals that are used in our food supply. We aren't told about it and we aren't given the choice not to eat them unless we opt out of the commercial mainstream all together. I remember the days I could shop in a supermarket and all I worried about was how the food looked and the price. Now I worry that the food will slowly kill me. I barely shop anywhere but at local farms these days. I miss the convenience. I miss the sense of safety. I think the mother of that Canadian child is doing the right thing and I live right here in the USA.

                                      1. re: susanl143

                                        "...the additive they give to pigs right before slaughter that causes them to have more lean meat and less fat. "
                                        This sounds suspicious (and like a pharmacological miracle - a drug that burns fat and increases muscle mass in a matter of days). Can you cite a credible source?

                                        I see I was wrong - thanks JayL (below) for the info...

                                        1. re: caganer

                                          Any credible source will lead you to additives such as Ractopamine...a pharmaceutical that quickly promotes weight gain and increases leanness.

                                        2. re: susanl143

                                          The confinement pork has actually been selectively bred to produce leaner pork ... the new wave in Iowa akin to the grass fed beef movement is "artisan" and/or "heritage" hogs, which are less lean and further allowed to roam around outside more.

                                          1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                            Factory pork is certainly more lean than pork used to be, but it isn't totally a matter of selective breeding. They indeed are given additives to lean them up in the last couple of months before heading to slaughter.

                                            1. re: JayL

                                              They also use feed additives ... rest assured, I am well aware of the intimate facts about confinement pork production.

                                          2. re: susanl143

                                            The additive Ractopamine is just as legal in Canada as it is in the US.

                                        3. even 'organic' us and canada have different standards.

                                          1. What is the Canadian policy on high fructose corn syrup?

                                            I know it is banned in some other countries and I could see citizens of those counties avoiding processed foods that might contain that product. I believe the US is kind of ~known~ for pushing HFCS on it's food consumers.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: pedalfaster

                                              We definitely have HFCS in many products such as coke, but in some cases have retained previous cane (or beet? sucrose, in any case) sugar formulations, such as for Heinz ketchup. We have local sugar production and no government incentive to grow corn that I know of, so the relative prices (and politics) might be different than the US.
                                              Which brings me to my answer for the OP - is it possible that due to recent factory closures, such as Heinz, the parents are making a political/economic decision to avoid US foods?

                                              1. re: julesrules

                                                I doubt I would ever have a chance to find out why (having been just an occasional volunteer at this school program). In a group of about 25 kids, we already have enough other dietary concerns to remember - dairy, COCONUT, egg, and of course nuts in general. That child with the instruction was only 8-9, and didn't have an answer why.

                                                It would be interesting if it was indeed a political statement.