I am very excited to learn that the USDA has finally decided that grassfed really means grassfed, period. Not grain finished, corn finished, etc, etc… but milk fed as a calf, and then pastured… and that is it. That is very, very exciting — because that is exactly what we have — beef that is solely fed pasture in season and hay in the winter — hence they are grassfed. Here is what I found out recently: USDA standards on the labeling of “grass fed” The gist:grass and/or forage shall be the feed source consumed for the lifetime of the ruminant animal, with the exception of milk consumed prior to weaning. The diet shall be derived solely from forage and animals cannot be fed grain or grain by-products and must have continuous access to pasture during the growing season.
IMPORTANT: this means that animals “finished” on grain will no longer be labeled as grass-fed.
I am shocked to read other blogs that make the following claims:
“USDA Grass Fed” can come from cattle that was confined in a feedlot, drugged and injected, and came from mothers that were grain-fed or were grain-fed themselves, until weaning age. ”
I have not met any real-world farmers who would do that to their “grass fed” bovines. Maybe a belief that farmers wouldn’t knowingly mis-label their product in the manner described above is just a small-town USA mentality. I would hope that such a hideous ethical breach would never be an option, for any farmer, grassfed or not. More information at http://www.ethicurean.com/