Livestock Treatment on Regenerative Ranches
Nature designed cattle to roam and eat grass. In turn, grazing bovines help replenish the soil with the physical stimulation of their hooves. This helps recycle nutrients and promote seedling development. Their manure puts nutrients back into the soil.
Regenerative grazing involves rotating pastures so that cattle do not overgraze. There is a recovery period for plants before the cattle graze on it again. Erosion is reduced due to continuous root systems in the soil. The runoff leading to water pollution is minimized.
Unlike factory-farmed cattle, livestock raised using the principles of regenerative agriculture live naturally and with as little stress as possible.
At Thousand Hills Lifetime Grazed, we are committed to raising livestock humanely. This commitment extends to restoring the land, encouraging biodiversity, and improving water quality.
Regenerative Agriculture Livestock
When raised regeneratively, cows can express their natural behaviors. The ability to live as they have evolved to do means that cattle are less likely to get sick or experience reproductive problems.
Regenerative grazing improves soil health and the health of the grass ecosystem. That means better forage for cattle, resulting in healthier and happier animals. The water holding capacity of soils increases. It sequesters carbon in roots and plant tissues, limiting the carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere – a major contributor to climate change.
There is no use of chemical pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers.
Confined Animal Feeding Operations
The formal term for giant feedlots is Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). Most cattle CAFOs have a minimum of 1,000 animal units – otherwise known as cows.
These are terrible places for cattle. Rather than allowing them to graze, the feed – primarily in the form of corn – is brought to them. That is unnatural, as bovine digestive systems were not created to eat grains. They cannot range as cattle were meant to do. They are stuck in a confined space.
While regenerative agriculture improves the environment, CAFOs degrade it. The tremendous amounts of manure generated by CAFOs is stored in lagoons, where it threatens groundwater and surface water sources.
CAFOs threaten local public health. Here are just some of the damages CAFOs have the potential to cause:
- Changes in air quality
- Land use changes
- Negative impacts on soil quality
- Impacts on local wells
- Road damage from increased truck traffic
- Increased odor and noise complaints
No Antibiotics or Growth Hormones
Livestock raised on regenerative ranches never receive antibiotics or growth hormones. That is not the case with their feedlot counterparts.
Feedlot cattle are bulked up with corn prior to slaughter. Even worse, they are pumped full of antibiotics because of the rampant disease present in feedlots. They are given growth hormones to boost weight artificially before going to market.
Antibiotics and growth hormones taint the meat as it enters the food supply. In fact, China has restricted the importation of U.S. beef implanted with hormones promoting growth. Europe has had a similar restriction in place for more than 20 years.
The FDA continues to allow the use of antibiotics in cattle feed, even though scientists have determined that these drugs contribute to the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria via the food supply. Roughly 80 percent of antibiotics sold in the U.S. are used for agriculture, not for treating people.
Millions of Americans suffer from antibiotic-resistant infections each year, and approximately 23,000 succumb to these infections annually.
Here’s a list of FDA-permitted hormones allowed in U.S. cattle:
- Estradiol – a form of the female hormone estrogen
- Progesterone – used for reproductive management
- Testosterone – the male hormone that accelerates physical development and weight gain
- Trenbolone acetate – an androgen and anabolic steroid used for growth promotion
- Zeranol – a synthetic estrogen used to boost growth
These hormones do cause cattle to gain weight and mature more quickly. They have also been linked to numerous human health issues, ranging from early puberty to cancer.
Shop Our Online Store for 100% Grass Fed Beef from Humanely Treated Cattle
When you order 100% grass fed beef from Thousand Hills Lifetime Grazed, you are assured of receiving meat from cattle that lived naturally and never received hormones or antibiotics. Our beef is lean, tasty, low in cholesterol and high in essential fatty acids and antioxidants. Not only are you eating a delicious meal, but your choice is helping to save the planet.
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