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Letters to the Editor

Moot ‘toot’ a hoot

Andy Hutchison May 4th, 2011

In defense of my ability as a cattle producer to provide for your family, I must comment on Rod Lott’s charticle “A toot point” (April 20, Oklahoma Gazette).

Most people are three generations removed from the farm and aren’t sure where their food comes from, so those of us in animal agriculture are working constantly to correct misinformation, and put the public at ease.

The beef you serve your family likely started on one of the 1 million U.S. cattle ranches like mine. We’re proud of what we do to raise food, and thousands of byproducts such as baseball gloves, leather, ice cream, piano keys, vitamin capsules, asphalt, cosmetics, fertilizer, insulation, medicines, paint, plastic, soap and tires for you and your family. Today’s cattlemen provide more people with nutritious beef using fewer natural resources than in the past. The average U.S. farmer can feed around 155 people worldwide, compared to only 26 decades ago. Estimates are that global food production must increase 70 percent by the year 2050 for an expanding world population.

 I was confused, as the information stated is taken from the Environmental Protection Agency. However, according to my EPA resource, livestock production is estimated to account for only 2.8 percent of total U.S. emissions. Cattle also serve as a valuable role in the ecosystem by converting 85 percent of U.S. grazing lands unsuitable for crop production into a nutrient-dense food.

You can guiltlessly enjoy lean beef as part of a healthy, balanced diet, knowing that you’re doing something good for your health and the health of the planet. An average 3-ounce serving of lean beef provides 10 essential nutrients, including all the essential amino acids your body needs, all for only 154 calories.

—Andy Hutchison
Hutchison is a member of the national Cattlemen’s Beef Board.

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05.04.2011 at 06:58 Reply

Well Sir, since this is almost a totally verbatim repost of your online comment, I'll respond in kind.

"You can guiltlessly enjoy lean beef as part of a healthy, balanced diet, knowing that you’re doing something good for your health and the health of the planet."

I've seen how these animals are abused on factory farms, and I've seen how these animals enter into slaughter without being humanely euthanized.  Having seen still living cattle strung up by their hind legs, freaking out, as their throats are slit and blood pours down their faces, I can assure you, that I can never enjoy beef guiltlessly.


Long are the days when ranchers actually care for their cattle like children, these days it’s about turning a profit as quickly as possible.  Don’t get me wrong, I love money as much as the next guy, but you have a serious moral deficiency when you make that money by exploiting sentient creatures.  Most ranchers are no better then those operating puppy mills.  Those with the decency to raise their cattle organically are a step up in my book, but more than likely their cattle suffer the same horrific end. 


We might as well be eating Soylent Green.