Government Shutdown Affecting Agriculture Programs

white house
As the government shutdown continues this week, there are several agriculture programs that are starting to take a hit. The limited funding is starting to impact the Supplemental Nutrition Program that is known as the food stamp program. The Congress’s Recovery Act provides funding until the end of this month but after that the assistance will vary in each state. They are encouraging participants to use their food stamps as soon as possible before the financial support runs out. Another $6 billion program, Women, Infants, and Children program, will be not being operating at all. It is partially funded within the state but could run out of funding in days or weeks. Additionally, the Food Safety and Inspection Service will continue to employ 87% of their people to continually keep food in stores safe to eat. The FDA has been laid off which is a scary thing to think about because they oversee majority of America’s food inspections. We may not be seeing the effects first had, but a longer shutdown could result in more serious penalties.

Beef, It’s What’s For Dinner

beef
When people think of beef they most generally think of a big juicy hamburger full of calories. With all the latest health trends this does not paint the greatest picture for the beef producers. After searching the web this week I found a great website produced by the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association that promotes beef. It has a nutritional facts page called, “Beef’ Big 10” vitamins and minerals that beef provides for our bodies.
http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/health.aspx
Additionally, it shows a bunch of different recipes that include beef. They are categorized into dishes for Halloween, tailgating, fall comfort foods, beef for breakfast, salads, quick & easy, grilling, and several others.
http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/recipes.aspx
My favorite part of the Beef, It’s What’s For Dinner website is the Butcher Counter and the Interactive Meat Case that allows you to choose a section of a grocery store meat case and view helpful beef information and cooking tips. Also, this page shows the different types of beef and gives a brief description of what categorizes them as, grain-finished, grass-finished, naturally raised, or certified organic.
http://www.beefitswhatsfordinner.com/butchercounter.aspx
This is such an informational website and a great outlet to send people that aren’t as familiar with the nurtitional facts and cooking beef.

“Agvocate”

I have always been on the quiet side and keep my thoughts to myself. It does keep me out of hot water on touchy subjects but then again it is not always a good thing. In my consumer market behavior class one person brings a current event into class every week and presents on it. Last week a girl happened to be presenting on the video, “The Scarecrow” that Chipotle made. I sat in my chair and listened to my classmates comment on how great it is and how they would go eat there. There were comments like, “that was brilliant” and “they are going to generate a lot of business from this.” There were so many things that I wanted to say but didn’t know how I could present the lies that this video was telling. I kept saying to myself to just let it go because they wouldn’t understand what I was even talking about anyway with the fact that it is illegal to even give poultry hormones and that some cows have better lives than some people. As I left class I almost felt guilty that I didn’t stand up and “agvocate”. The next night I was in my PR in Ag class and sure enough the video was brought up again and we talked about how bad it was making agriculture look. My teacher said that we are all agriculturists no matter what our major and they we should speak up. From then on I made a promise to myself that if I felt like something was being portrayed wrong in agriculture then I would say something even if it was small it could make someone see it in a different way. Here is a quick video that a classmate and I did that makes consumers aware of the lies that, “The Scarecrow” is telling.