Monday, May 10, 2010

Supermarket endorses Meatless Mondays - Beef Information Centre busts a spleen

So it started harmlessly enough. Sobey's (a grocery chain) printed its Spring issue of Inspired Magazine which featured an article on how to "be green".

Among their three suggestions was, "Try going meatless once a week" with reference to the Meatless Monday's movement. They also suggested that eating less meat overall could help to lower your intake of cholesterol and saturated fat.

That ticked off Laura Bodell.

You see Laura's the co-owner of Bella Spur Innovative Media Inc., an Edmonton based company that caters to the beef industry. Laura read the article in Sobey's Inspired magazine and according to coverage in trade magazine Western Producer, decided to launch a letter writing campaign on Facebook because, "My clients’ livelihood is based on the popularity of beef."

Now while I can't find any such campaign on Facebook, the Beef Information Centre, the marketing snout of the beef industry, did get wind of this outrageous outrage and jumped into action. Ron Glaser, their Executive Director of Communications sent a comical letter to Belinda Youngs, Sobey's Chief Marketing Officer.

The letter lays out beef's defense.

Wait for it.

Beef's good for you because, hmmm.

Wait for it.

Beef's good for you because regardless of the incredible variety of cuts and types of fresh and processed beef there exist 8 cuts that qualify for the Heart and Stroke Foundation's Health Check!

It's also good for you because it's included in Canada's Food Guide and contains, guess what, nutrients!

Ron then goes on to talk about how cattle are raised on lands that couldn't be forests and that the methane produced by cow flatulence depends on feed quality and that Canadian feed quality is top notch.

I guess that means also top notch is our cow flatulence, and reading the letter I couldn't help but be surprised that Ron didn't try to make the argument that Canadian cow farts actually smell like roses.

Viva Meatless Monday!

[For the other side of the beef/environment argument head over to Meatless Monday's site where you can find all sorts of information that I'm sure Ron Glaser would find fault with.]

[Hat tip to Meatless Monday aficionado Peter Fricker from the Vancouver Humane Society]