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– Consumer Reports Testing Finds All Beef Shows Signs of Fecal Contamination (AllGov, Aug 27, 2015):
Eating a hamburger in the U.S. comes with the risk that it might contain fecal matter, based on research performed for Consumer Reports.
“There’s no way to tell by looking at a package of meat or smelling it whether it has harmful bacteria or not,” said Urvashi Rangan, executive director of the Center for Food Safety and Sustainability at Consumer Reports. “You have to be on guard every time.”
– The Price Of Ground Beef Has DOUBLED Since The Last Financial Crisis (Economic Collapse, March 25, 2015):
Since the depths of the last recession, the price of ground beef in the United States has doubled. Has your paycheck doubled since then? Even though the Federal Reserve insists that we are in a “low inflation” environment, the government’s own numbers show that the price of ground beef has been on an unprecedented run over the past six years. In early 2009, the average price of a pound of ground beef was hovering near 2 dollars. In February, it hit a brand new all-time record high of $4.238 per pound. Even just 12 months ago, the price of ground beef was sitting at $3.555 per pound. So we are talking about a huge increase. And this hits American families where they really live. Each year, the average American consumes approximately 270 pounds of meat. The only nation in the world that eats more meat than we do is Luxembourg. If the paychecks of American workers were going up fast enough to deal with this increase, it wouldn’t be that big of a deal. But of course that is not happening. In an article just last week, I showed that real median household income is a couple thousand dollars lower now than it was during the depths of the last recession. The middle class is being squeezed, and we are rapidly getting to the point where burgers are going to be considered a “luxury” item.
H/t reader M.G.:
“Here is another story, the cost of beef is admitted to be at a 25 year high……by my figures using 2010 and 2014 prices, a 400% increase……”
– Beef prices climb to highest in 25 years (CNBC/AP, April 12, 2014):
The highest beef prices in almost three decades have arrived just before the start of grilling season, causing sticker shock for both consumers and restaurant owners — and relief isn’t likely anytime soon.
A dwindling number of cattle and growing export demand from countries such as China and Japan have caused the average retail cost of fresh beef to climb to $5.28 a pound in February, up almost a quarter from January and the highest price since 1987.
Everything that’s produced is being consumed, said Kevin Good, an analyst at CattleFax, a Colorado-based information group. And prices likely will stay high for a couple of years as cattle producers start to rebuild their herds amid big questions about whether the Southwest and parts of the Midwest will get enough rain to replenish pastures.
– Google’s Sergey Brin is the Money Behind Test-Tube Synthetic Burgers (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 6, 2013):
While I share Sergey Brin’s concerns about meat production and the completely cruel way in which we treat our animals, I can’t say I’m looking forward to biting into a test tube hamburger any time soon. This story has received a lot of press in the past few days following the synthetic meat’s taste testing in London yesterday. I have to admit, I’d take the entire thing a lot more seriously if Sergey wasn’t wearing those creepy and idiotic Google Glasses while discussing it (watch video):
From The Guardian:
The man who has bankrolled the production of the world’s first lab-grown hamburger has been revealed as Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The internet entrepreneur has backed the project to the tune of €250,000 (£215,000), allowing scientists to grow enough meat in the lab to create a burger – as a proof of concept – that will be cooked and eaten in London on Monday.
“It’s really just proof of concept right now, we’re trying to create the first cultured beef hamburger,” said Brin in a film to mark the tasting event in London. “From there I’m optimistic that we can really scale by leaps and bounds.”
– Beef Supply at 21-Year Low: Get Ready to Pay Up (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 2, 2013):
I don’t follow the commodity markets as closely as I used to, but the following article related to beef prices really caught my eye. Last year’s drought and consequent spike in grain prices led to negative margins for cattle producers, who subsequently culled their herds. As expected, this has resulted in tighter supply today. We see this evidenced in the fact that retail ground beef prices were up 13% year-over-year in June, and the CEO of Ruth’s Chris mentioned during a recent presentation that they were forced to raise prices in February. While grain prices are much lower today, which should encourage expansion in cattle supply, this process will actually cause even more tightness in the near-term as more animals are set aside for breeding rather than slaughtered.
Don’t worry, you can always just eat the S&P 500.
U.S. beef production is plunging to a 21-year low after surging feed costs spurred ranchers to cut herds, signaling record prices for consumers and higher costs for buyers from McDonald’s Corp. to Ruth’s Chris Steak House.
Production in the U.S. will decline 4.9 percent to 10.93 million metric tons in 2014, retreating for a fourth year, the government says. The herd on July 1 was the smallest for that date since at least 1973, according to the average of four analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
Retail ground-beef prices in June were up 13 percent from a year earlier and near a record set in January.
– Reality Check: The Dow Jones Industrial Average vs. Bananas (Sovereign Man, March 8, 2013):
Reporting from Santiago, Chile
The Dow Jones Industrial Average, one of the key benchmarks of the US stock market, has soundly surpassed its all-time high. And most of the investing world is toasting their collective success and celebrating the recovery.
It’s a funny thing, really. Most investors only think in terms of ‘nominal’ numbers, i.e. Dow 14,000+ is 40% higher than Dow 10,000 (back in November 2009). But few think in terms of ‘real’ numbers… inflation-adjusted averages.
Everyone knows that inflation exists. We can all look back on prices from the past and realize instantly how much more expensive things have become. Conversely, though, most people don’t think about the stock market like this.
The reality is, though, that when you adjust for inflation, the Dow is well below its highs from over a decade ago.
– Irish plant shuts over new horsemeat in burgers (Businessweek, Jan 18, 2013)
– Tesco withdraws over 10 million beef burgers in UK, Ireland after horsemeat discovery (allvoices, Jan 18, 2013)
– Horse meat supplier still operating in the Netherlands with authorities refusing to name and shame the Dutch company (Daily Mail, Jan 18, 2013)
– Horse meat in supermarket burgers linked to Dutch suppliers (Telegraph, Jan 18, 2013)
– Horse Meat Found in Irish Beef Burgers (TIME, Jan 17, 2013)
Scientific tests on some beef products found low levels of horse DNA But one offering from Tesco’s Value range had 29% horse meat Company has lost £300m off its market value today
Equine DNA also found in Dunnes Stores, Lidl, Aldi beef products Asda and Co-op remove frozen products as ‘precaution’ Today, fast food giant Burger King revealed it uses same supplier However, Burger King said its meat has not been affected
Irish scientists discovered contaminated burgers in late November But carried out three rounds of tests to ensure data was correct
UK Food Standards Agency launching investigation into the findings PM calls scandal ‘a completely unacceptable state of affairs’ Suppliers in Holland and Spain blamed for contaminated ingredients
Three more supermarkets have started clearing shelves of frozen beefburgers after it emerged they use the same supplier that sold Tesco products containing up to 29 per cent horse meat.
Asda, the Co-op and Sainsbury’s were not among the four retailers found to be selling contaminated food but say they have pulled some of their ranges as a ‘precautionary measure’.
It came as it was revealed horse-tainted beefburgers could have been on the shelves for almost two months after it was first discovered they contained equine meat.