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Sunday, 18 September 2016

From African fishing grounds to EU milk factories

Following from several of the superb and well-informed comments to the post below, I recommend a piece in today's Indie on the rape of African fish stocks. 

It's not perfect. The author for example in writing "Fishmeal plants in Senegal typically produce just 200 kg of fishmeal powder from one tonne of wet fish, protein that would otherwise be destined for human mouths in one of the hungriest regions on earth." clearly has little idea that what fishmeal plants actually do is to de-water the 80% water content of milled fish prepatory to transport. 

We're far from the 1970s, when battery eggs in the UK had yolks glowing bright orange with Xanthophyll and tasting strongly of fish from the crudely compounded feeds. Now the fish are fed to factory cows in vast, automated robotic farms using mutant and deformed Fresians as living milk plants, and technology has made the milk utterly tasteless as well as pulversing the fat globules down to a size in which our tongues not only cannot taste the rotten-fat taste of sour milk but the milk takes three times as long, once rotten, to de-emulsify. So filling stations can sell milk that can be six weeks old by the time you pour it over your cornflakes.*

And of course EU farmers maximising their CAP incomes can supplement the cows' staple feed of fish with silage or hay cut from the deserted and wildlife-barren meadows  surrounding the cow plants, so long as they soak them in enough nitrate fertilizer, pesticides and herbicides. 

* Until you come here - where milk is fresh, local and just pasteurised and tastes like milk tasted when you were a kid (not the free 1/3 pint stale vomit-flavoured wastings that were sold to schools but the real stuff your mum bought).


ASB said...

You can buy non-homogenised non-pasteurised milk online direct from the farm and some farmers' markets.I get mine from Hook & Sons. Less than 24 hours from udder to cornflakes.

Sackerson said...

Disgusting. And disquieting.

Do you know this site? -

Cuffleyburgers said...

Absolutely correct.

Husbandry of fishing resources is a disaster everywhere with a few noble exceptions, never has the tragedy of the commons been better demonstrated. The EU is right up there at the top table and having destroyed Europe's fishing grounds is now doing the same to Africa.

As for the unfortunate creatures producing industrial milk and bacon on supposedly compliant farms - I prefer not to think about it. You photo is sickening.

I wish the worthy lefties who get so upset about cultural appropriation or BLM (of course they do, all lives matter) would protest about issues of genuine importance, like this unfolding tragedy.

Anonymous said...

As ASB says, I have used Hook's products for a good number of years, until I cut down on my cow products for unrelated reasons... I first saw them at Borough Market, then I started to buy direct from Hailsham, but before that I used to buy this sort of dairy product from Plaw Hatch Farm, which goes a little bit further and is bio-dynamic as well (more difficult to get)... Hook sometimes also sells cholstrum (bee stings).

Agree with Cuffeyburgers too...

Just about the only thing that you can say that is positive about the EU's environmental policy, is that our supermarkets now charge for plastic bags, thus avoiding an environmental disaster... (see dictionary: sarcasm... )

But Raedwald... Where is it that you are flagging with your asterisk? Austria?


Raedwald said...

RW - yep; I'd forgotten what proper milk, butter and cream tasted like. Freshness and quality here are superlative

Anonymous said...

"RW - yep; I'd forgotten what proper milk, butter and cream tasted like. Freshness and quality here are superlative"

Ah schonen Osterreich........

Out and away from the big supermarket cartel, selling grot.....Verkaufs Nahrung zum Englisch, nien?

I blame it on; gullible Brits who've forgotten the art of taste - literally how to discern, Tesco, crony corporatism and CAP.

Anonymous said...

Sainsbury still do a 4 pint carton for £1

Weekend Yachtsman said...

I don't think the milk thing is entirely down the EU.

As long as people will buy the cheapest milk they can get, regardless of quality, the supermarkets will compete to supply them, and the farmers must dance to their tune.

4 pints for £1 at the retail counter doesn't leave much for animal welfare or a quality product.

Sceptical Steve said...

Weekend Yachtsman is entirely right. I know from my day-job that it's not the EU that dictated that our farmers would focus on volume rather than quality, as the Irish dairy farmers have gone in exactly the opposite direction, with their cows generating much lower volumes of high quality milk, primarily for sale into the for.Hal milk market. As I understand it, the UK decided that there was going to be a bonanza brought about when the Chinese middle classes developed a taste for processed milk products, and the UK invested heavily to make itself the source. Since then, the anticipated surge in demand never materialised, leaving our I industry heavily in debt and having to sell commodity milk products I to a buyers' market.o