A few weeks ago, I had written this post and was ready to publish, when the news handed me blog content on a silver platter. I re-wrote the whole thing thanks to the meat industry.
The headline read, “1 in 5 sausages tested across Canada contained different meat than labelled, study finds.” A study funded by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency tested 100 sausages samples from Toronto, Montreal and Calgary that were labelled as containing just one protein — beef, pork, chicken or turkey.
“About one in five of the sausages we tested had some off-label ingredients in them, which is alarming,” said Robert Hanner, lead author of the study and an associate professor with the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario at the University of Guelph . . . The undeclared meats found weren’t trace levels, Hanner noted.”
The study says that seven of 27 beef sausages tested contained pork — problematic for Halal or Kosher customers. One of the 38 pork sausages contained horse meat. A chicken sausage contained beef and five of the turkey sausages contained no turkey at all — they were entirely chicken.
Now, this study is not statistically significant so we should not paint the entire meat industry with the same broad brushstrokes. Rather, it demonstrates that these particular scientific methods and tools used to test for product purity may have potential in the CFIA’s regulatory practices and enforcement.
Besides the obvious fact that the CFIA needs to increase monitoring and enforcement in meat plants, it is also evident that it’s worth asking questions about where your food comes from and what goes into it.
The best way to do that is to go straight to the source.
I may be preaching to the converted here. You may already shop at Farmer’s Markets and buy direct from farms like ours; thus, you already have first-hand knowledge of what you’re putting in your belly and sleep well at night.
But if you’re still seeking some peace of mind when it comes to your food, welcome to the idea of knowing your farmer. You will have to invest some time and money into your food, but I can’t think of a better place to park your hard-earned cash than into your personal health and well-being.
Yes, you deserve to know how your food was grown, what went into it and become informed.
Yes, you deserve the pleasure of fabulous tasting meat — life is too short for fast food.
I think you get what you pay for when it comes to most anything. Ideally, we’d buy quality items that were delivered quickly and priced cheaply. But those things don’t exist. Not really.
In the food world, cheap food tends to have more additives, fillers, preservatives — and maybe even substitute meats. Or cheap food is made in foreign countries with different food regulations and labour laws.
Cheap food always has a cost. You just might not see it right away. Someone or something always pays the price for cheap food — farmers and workers, your health, the environment, the ingredients label, or the flavor.
At Pine View Farms, our meat is not the cheapest price. But we aim to be the best meat money can buy, giving you value for your dollar.
That’s why we take our time, raising our animals without antibiotics, added growth hormones or animal byproduct in the feed.
That’s why we don’t add fillers, gluten or sodium nitrite to our sausages and deli meats.
That’s why we pin feather our chickens by hand to make sure they’re perfectly clean.
That’s why we don’t pump our chicken breasts with water so that 100% of what you buy is 100% of what you eat.
That’s why we dry age our beef for 14 days to intensify the rich beefy flavor and tenderize the meat.
At Pine View Farms, we can tell you exactly where every animal came from, how it was raised, how the meat was processed and what’s in every recipe. Come see our farm for yourself. Or, pick up the phone and give us a call, or drop us an email. Think of Pine View Farms as “your farmer”.
On our farm, we believe in investing our time, money and energy to make food better — better tasting and better for you. We believe you get what you pay for.