How American Farmers are forced to depopulate their animals is a severe sign of what is going on in the world!
I have to say that I hope that regenerative farming will be the future because this is the only way to recover our environment, our health, our countries, and our local and social structures, supporting the local shops, farmers, and life. We have to concentrate on our own countries to change the destruction huge cooperations and stakeholders have caused.
In the USA, these cooperations and the government forces farmers to depopulate their animals. It is crazy! All their work is going to be destroyed, all the animals, all the food supply. If you don’t wake up, it can be too late!
The following article is written by Dr. Joseph Mercola, who has allowed me to place articles on my website that would otherwise disappear.
Cattle Rancher Warns About the Meat You’re Buying
Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola
- American cattle rancher, Shad Sullivan from North Texas, was interviewed by host Patrick Bet-David about the future of the cattle and beef industry.
- Sullivan received an email from the USDA in April 2020, stating that it would help farmers find alternative markets for their harvests, as COVID-19 caused meat processing plants to shut down.
- If alternative markets couldn’t be found, state veterinarians and government officials would assist with culls, or depopulation, of the animals; meanwhile, the U.S. continues to import beef from other countries.
- Due to the allowance of acquisitions and mergers, four companies — Tyson, Cargill, JBS, and National Beef, which is owned by Marfrig Global Foods — control 85% of the U.S. beef supply
- There are now 727,906 beef farms and ranches in the U.S. In 1979, Sullivan says, there were 1.2 million to 1.3 million; he believes that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, one-third of the remaining beef farms and ranches in the U.S. may disappear after 2020 — maybe more.
This article was previously published on January 2, 2021, and has been updated with new information.
In the video above, American cattle rancher Shad Sullivan from North Texas is interviewed by host Patrick Bet-David about the future of the cattle and meat industry.
In April 2020, Sullivan posted a YouTube video1 discussing how U.S. farmers are being forced to dump the food supply — plowing under vegetable crops, euthanizing millions of chickens, aborting sows and burying feeder pigs, and dumping milk by the hundreds of thousands of gallons. While YouTube has since taken down the video, it continues to be “live” on private websites.
In the video, Sullivan says officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture were also preparing farmers to depopulate cattle that were ready to harvest due to a “bottleneck created by the effects of COVID and the logistics therein.” Yet, while preparing U.S. cattle ranchers to cull their herds, the U.S. was actively importing beef from other countries.
The first shipment of beef from Namibia, for instance, arrived in the U.S. in April 2020, prompting Sullivan to ask, “Am I the only one that sees a problem in this? … We are importing beef from other countries. Beef that is less regulated than our beef, less safe, not as high-quality of product, and yet, it’s happening. At the same time, they’re preparing for us to euthanize our harvests.”
USDA Email Told Farmers It Would Assist in Depopulation
Sullivan received an email from the USDA in April 2020, stating that it would help farmers to find alternative markets for their harvests, and if that couldn’t be done, state veterinarians and government officials would assist with culls, or depopulation, of the animals.
In May 2020, the USDA announced that its Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) had established a National Incident Coordination Center that would support producers who could not move their animals due to the closing of processing plants because of COVID-19.
“Going forward,” the announcement stated, “APHIS’ Coordination Center, State Veterinarians, and other state officials will be assisting in helping identify potential alternative markets if a producer is unable to move animals, and if necessary, advise and assist on depopulation and disposal methods.”
As processing plants shut down across the U.S. near the beginning of the pandemic, farmers were forced to euthanize hundreds of thousands of animals, a waste of meat during a time when many were struggling to find food and a sentence that caused emotional and economic damage to farmers.
Because the processing is concentrated into a small number of extensive facilities, a U.S. government statement noted at the time, “[C]losure of any of these plants could disrupt our food supply and detrimentally impact our hardworking farmers and ranchers.”
The government also cited statistics that closing one large beef processing plant could lead to a loss of more than 10 million servings of beef in a day and noted that closing one processing plant can eliminate more than 80% of the supply of a given meat product, such as ground beef, to an entire grocery store chain. This highlight the glaring problems that come along with a highly concentrated and centralized food system.
Four Companies Control 85% of the Beef Cattle Supply Chain
Due to the allowance of acquisitions and mergers, four companies — Tyson, Cargill, JBS, and National Beef, owned by Marfrig Global Foods — control the majority of the U.S. beef supply. These companies are multinational corporations that act as processors and distributors of beef. Decades ago, according to Sullivan, there may have been 800 different processors of beef, where now there are only four.
By taking away all competition, they’ve taken control of the entire industry. In April 2019, Tyson, Cargill, JBS, and National Beef were accused of violating federal antitrust law by colluding to drive down the price of cattle they bought from ranchers while boosting retail prices to boost profits.
According to the lawsuit, which was filed by the Ranchers Cattlemen Action Legal Fund United Stockgrowers of America (R-CALF), the companies “engaged in tactics — including purchasing fewer cattle than a competitive market would otherwise demand and running their processing plants at less than available capacity” — that had the result of creating surpluses in the cattle market but shortages in the wholesale beef market.
“There’s an oligarchy of power and control at the top of the chain,” Sullivan said, “and that trickles down to you … They can eliminate competition in the United States while bringing in cheaper, lower quality meat from other countries.” In 2020, the U.S. imported beef from at least 19 countries, including Nicaragua, Japan, Croatia, Lithuania, and Chile.
Product of the USA Doesn’t Mean It’s From the U.S.
The original Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) rule, approved in 2002 and took effect in 2008, required the country of origin to be listed on meat labels. In 2013, the COOL rule was improved, and meat packages were supposed to be required to label where the animal that provided your meat was born, raised, and slaughtered.
At the time, industrial meat producers like Tyson, Cargill, and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association were among those who spoke out against the rule, calling it unnecessarily costly and “short-sighted” while fearing it would shrink demand for imported meat.
Unfortunately for U.S. consumers seeking greater transparency in their food sources, the meat giants needn’t have worried because global dictators stepped in and essentially told consumers they don’t have the right to know.
In 2015, the World Trade Organization ruled that U.S. law requiring COOL labels on meat was illegal. It discriminated against Canadian and Mexican meat companies and gave an advantage to U.S. meat producers. By removing COOL, multinational companies are allowed to pass off imported meat as U.S.-raised, while U.S. farmers suffer.
As long as it’s processed in a U.S. facility, it can be labeled “Product of USA ” — even if that processing involves nothing more than unwrapping and rewrapping the package or cutting a piece of meat into smaller pieces.
The National Cattleman’s Beef Association, a cattle industry lobbying group, continues to push back against mandatory COOL, as processors don’t want the added expense of having to differentiate and label meats from different origins. R-CALF USA, which represents independent cattle producers, is fighting for mandatory COOL, calling it individual rights and liberty.
But “it’s a pay-to-play system,” Sullivan says. “The packers pay to sit on the board of directors, and then they’re required to play how the packers want.” When asked how much similarity there is with pharmaceutical lobbyists and lobbyists in the meat industry, Sullivan says, “Very similar … it’s all about money, power, and control. Lobbying is power.”
It’s Nearly Impossible for Next Generation to Raise Cattle
There are now 727,906 beef farms and ranches in the U.S. In 1979, Sullivan says, there were 1.2 million to 1.3 million. The dramatic decline results from a gradual disappearance because of the lack of competition throughout the industry. As more acquisitions and mergers occur, small farms disappear. Meanwhile, expenses are on the rise, and, without competition in the marketplace, profits fall.
Bet-David asked Sullivan if he would be able to “sell” someone on getting into the industry today, and Sullivan said, “It’s financially impossible.” An individual looking to get into the cattle industry would face the high cost of land, startup costs, and overhead, for slight profits, if any, making it a losing proposition for most, especially without a lot of extra cash to pull from.
Currently, Sullivan says he spends $1,200 per animal for a $900 return. “And therefore, across America, we have seen hundreds of thousands of youth not return to the family operation after high school or college.” Sullivan believes that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, one-third of the remaining beef farms and ranches in the U.S. may disappear after 2020 — maybe more.
As more farms and ranches shut down, the industry becomes even more concentrated. One thing that can help U.S. farmers is to support mandatory COOL. According to the American Grassfed Association (AGA), “U.S. cattle producers received higher prices for their cattle when the origins of foreign beef were distinguished in the marketplace.”
As it stands, Americans may be eating imported meat from a country with lower standards for their meat, but they have no way of knowing it. This is even true for grass-fed beef, about 80% of which is imported into the U.S. from other countries that can produce it at a lower cost.11 It’s a food safety issue, according to Sullivan:
“The consumer doesn’t know where that food safety issue lies, and they need to have the choice to do that. And if I’m gone as an individual producer, who fills my shoes now, in this time and age? Nobody.
Only multinational corporations, the conglomerates, the control … We have the highest quality beef supply … we’ve spent the last 150 years improving our herds. We want that to be differentiated from those people who have not worked so hard to be in the U.S. market.”
Regenerative Farming Has Saved Farmers
Cattle farmers have differentiated themselves in these difficult times by converting to grass-fed, regenerative farming. Allen Williams, Ph.D., a sixth-generation family farmer, has consulted with more than 4,200 farmers and ranchers in the U.S. on soil health, cover-cropping, livestock integration, grazing management, and other regenerative agriculture practices.
Over the farmers and ranchers Allen has worked with the past 20 years were in deep distress, trying to farm and ranch conventionally, and failing. Many of them were on the brink of losing their farms, which had been in the family for generations. By teaching them regenerative land13 management techniques, many of them were able to rebuild and prosper financially. In a previous interview with me, he said.
“The average age of farmers and ranchers across the U.S. are people in their 60s and early 70s. So, we desperately need the younger generation to return to the land, and these regenerative practices allow them to have that opportunity to return and to do it in a profitable and viable manner where they can support their young and growing families.”
Regenerative farming pioneer Will Harris, who runs White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Georgia, is another example of how you can accomplish the conversion from conventional to regenerative agriculture and thrive financially. He produces high-quality grass-fed products, including beef and other animal products.
The Grassfed Exchange is one resource for ranchers, who can learn to produce the highest quality beef using 100% grass-based production models.
Supporting the Processing Revival and Intrastate Meat Exemption (PRIME) Act,16 introduced by Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., and co-sponsored by Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, is also beneficial, as it would allow farmers to sell meat processed at smaller slaughtering facilities and allow states to set their meat processing standards.
Because small slaughterhouses do not have an inspector on staff, a requirement that only extensive facilities can quickly fulfill, they’re banned from selling their meat. The PRIME Act would lift this regulation without sacrificing safety, as random USDA inspections could still occur.17
On an individual level, the best way to support U.S. farmers is to seek out locally produced food as much as possible, including grass-fed beef, and buy it directly from the farm or a farmers market whenever you can.
I don’t see animals as products but as God-given beautiful creatures on our planet. If I consume meat, I get it only from the organic butcher and eat rather less meat but quality meat. Here in the Netherlands, we heard already that the government has plans to reduce the number of farmers. I think it is better to help the farmers to change their farming model to regenerative, sustainable farming, with respect to Nature, animals, ourselves, and the environment. The government is corrupted by the money they are receiving from the big cooperations, and so they are their puppets, destroying their own people and countries, only to help a few super-rich people get richer, and to control the world. It is up to us to support our farmers, help our countries to recover, and keep stakeholders out of the countries. Local farmers, shops, companies should be our future. First the own country, then maybe carefully trading with others. We as the people should choose our own countries and fellow humans. These cooperations have destroyed our planet, countries, environments, and lives. They get richer on our costs. What happens in the USA right now is serious, and we can not turn the faces. It is our all food supply. These people behind these plans are evil, trying to create one disaster after the other to bring us to the knees, begging them for help, so they can force their New World Order on us, where we are the slaves. And this is not a conspiracy theory. They have planned this change already for decades. They will depopulate the world’s population, and control the rest!
What do you think?: I would love to hear your opinion! How is it in your country? Please, let us know! Do you face the same problems?
All the Best,