Comments Off on A burger by any other name
Feb 6, 2009 by Lee Hart

A burger by any other name

Man, I had lunch the other day with a couple Canadian
Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) types, and I don’t know what to think. One had a
chicken quesadilla and then conveniently left her wallet in the car, and the
other one had the All-American burger. No wonder this industry is in trouble.

I think it should be mandatory in letters’ of employment
that all CCA employees be required to eat Canadian beef three times a day (or
at least have beef when out in public).

Actually I made up the part about the All-American burger.
It was a tasty burger, but I’m not sure if it was American or Canadian or from
Uruguay for that matter.  This was
a White Spot Restaurant and they do have AAA Canadian beef steak on their menu.
They may serve AAA Canadian burger.

Ever since this COOL issue (Country of Origin Labeling) has
been forefront in the news it has increased my interest in buying Canadian.
Travis Toews a Beaverlodge, Alta. rancher and CCA trade committee chair, says
the CCA isn’t worried about U.S. consumers not wanting to buy meat products
labeled Canadian. The main issue is because of the hassle of segregating and
separate processing of Canadian cattle (separate from U.S. cattle) that U.S.
feedlots and packers won’t want to handle Canadian cattle. Or if they do it
will be at a great price discount.

Toews says the spirit of NAFTA and the intent of World Trade
Organization regulations is that if an imported product has to be substantially
processed before it goes on the retail shelf, it should carry the name of the
country that does this processing. He says that’s what happens to U.S. cattle
coming into Canada for processing. That meat is packaged as product of Canada.

I know not every Canadian farmer and rancher agrees with
that thinking. Some have said U.S. beef sold in Canada should be labeled as
such – and hopefully be allowed to rot in the grocery store retail case. Oh,
man where is our compassion and brotherly love for our southern neighbor?

The issue that at the moment worries me more is it may be a
new CCA policy that all employees conveniently leave their wallets in the car
when going out for lunch. This could put tremendous financial pressure on the
struggling publishing industry.

 

 

 

 

 

  

Lee Hart

Lee Hart


Lee Hart is a long-time farm writer, and honorary member of the Alberta Institute of Agrologists, with many observations on the agriculture industry, who never hesitates to admit he is wrong (should that ever happen.)


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