The researchers noted that these samples of meat were not contaminated due to handling but the meat itself contained the bacteria, and the Staph is resistant because of the antibiotics used in factory farmed feedlots. According to the CDC, about 11,000 Americans die every year from S. aureus, more than half of whom contracted the resistant form of S. aureus known as MRSA. Those at highest risk are young children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems. Guess who fits in that category? Tye.
I don't have an issue with Tye eating meat, but I have major issues surrounding exposing her to potentially lethal strains of bacteria. That medium rare steak? That chicken that's just barely done and dripping a little pink juice? A 50/50 chance it contains Staph? I'm just not willing to take that risk with my child, who is in the at-risk category because of her age.
Re-read that statistic: the same bacteria found in half the supermarket meat kills 11,000 people a year. Is it worth the risk for yourself? (If you do continue to eat factory farmed meat, please please please, practice safe food preparation to prevent cross-contamination and cook your meat thoroughly!)
We recently joined a farm share for meat, dairy, and eggs. It's a local farm with organic grass-fed beef, raw dairy, and pastured chickens, eggs, lamb, turkey, and pork with a pickup location in Chicago. These foods are available at a significantly reduced cost in comparison with similar goods at Whole Foods Market, and we know the exact farm where the meat was raised. Because the animals are raised in pastures and fed natural diets (no corn for the cows, no soy for the chickens or pork, no same-species meat or mystery feed), the animals are naturally healthy and don't need copious amounts of antibiotics. They also don't naturally contain dangerous S. aureus bacteria. I feel comfortable with Tye eating meat from this local farm with healthy animals. I even make our scrambled eggs a little runny and share with Tye my eggs over easy, with beautiful bright orange runny yolks because I trust they're from healthy hens.
I'm not, and never have been, against consuming animal products when they are raised humanely and truly healthfully. Unfortunately, that can be really difficult to find in the US (and is why I was vegan for 3 years and am still mostly vegetarian). Tye won't be vegetarian, but especially with terrifying statistics like these in my back pocket, she likely won't be eating non-organic meat anytime soon.
|Tye eating one of her favorite snacks, roasted seaweed (seriously!)|