Pub burger that is Half Beyond Meat, half beef draws criticism: 'All or nothing' – Fox News

Fifty percent beef, fifty perfect fake – all controversial.

U.K.-based craft beer and pub chain BrewDog has come under fire on Twitter for its earnest attempt at bridging the food world gap between meat eaters and faux-meat eaters with its “Hybrid Burger” launch.


The newest offering is made with a 50/50 patty mixture of beef burger and Beyond Meat. The patty is stacked under a potato rosti cake, crispy onion straws, melted vegan gouda cheese and sandwiched between matcha tea buns.


Much like the patty itself, the Hybrid Burger – which the restaurant touts as “50 % less meat, 100 % delicious” – has received mixed reviews, with most criticizing the burger as unnecessary.


That said, there were a number of people who admitted they would like to try the burger – or at least understood where the company was coming from with the offering.

Despite the backlash, BrewDog defended its quirky menu addition, stating it was meant to offer an option to those who are interested in meat alternatives, but do not want to completely stop eating meat.


As the demand for fake meat grows, Beyond Meat has been added to the menu of many chains across the globe.

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Cattle losses likely as Montana ranchers dig out from September blizzard – Tri-State Livestock News

Running cows in the shadow of Montana’s Rocky Mountain Front isn’t for the faint of heart. Droughts, floods, winds so strong they’ll knock you off your horse, erratic cattle prices, and a gang of predators eager to make a meal out of any calf that crosses their path: all that is a normal part of ranching on the Rocky Mountain Front.

Pat ‘Judge’ Hall has lived there for 64 years. His ranch, Blacktail Angus, stands just north of Birch Creek on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Four generations of Halls have made their living running cows on the Rocky Mountain Front, but none of them ever saw a September storm quite like the one that blew in last Friday.

“Where I live, we got close to four foot of snow on the level,” Hall said. “The snow banks are 10- to 12-feet deep. There’s no way I can get out of here with tractors or anything like that. It’s flat tough.”

Strong winds and heavy snow hit the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains late Friday evening. The worst of it centered on a narrow expanse stretching from the Canadian border south to Augusta. By Monday afternoon the Blackfeet Indian Reservation’s largest community, Browning, had 48 inches of snow piled up, breaking a record for September storms set in 1908.

Once the snow stopped and the winds died down, Blackfeet officials had a chance to evaluate the situation. What they found was disheartening.

“We have a lot of displaced livestock and many fences covered by snow,” said Terry Tatsey of the Blackfeet Tribal Business Council. “Many parts of Blackfeet Country were heavily affected by the snow accumulation. Many ranchers are searching for their cattle as the snow recedes. We have many ranchers who will need hay.”

Just a few miles east, the conditions were far more tolerable. The city of Cut Bank, just 33 miles away, received less than a third of Browning’s total snow accumulation.

“My brother lives west of Cut Bank about 10- or 12-miles,” Hall said. “He called me on Saturday to see how things were over here. That’s when we were still piling up. He said, ‘We’ve got about six inches’.

Farmers and ranchers across northcentral Montana had ample warning that a major winter storm was was about to hit, but few fully appreciated its impending severity. Adding to their troubles was widespread delays getting winter feed. A cool, wet summer slowed maturation of the area’s hay crop. Ranchers used to having their stack yards filled before Labor Day stared nervously as the empty yards filled with snow.

“We knew the storm was coming, but there was no way I could have got up there within a day and got my cattle moved down,” Hall said of his herd grazing on the flanks of the Lewis and Clark National Forest. “It really wouldn’t have done much good for me anyway, because I wouldn’t have been able to feed them.”

“Normally by the end of August I’ve got all my hay bought and moved in,” he explained, “but the hay producer I buy mine from, he didn’t get his second crop until right about the middle of September. About the time I got ready to move that, this storm hit. I do have some feed on hand, but nothing compared to what I’d have in a normal year. Everybody else is pretty much in the same situation here.”

As noted before, ranchers by nature are a pretty hardy lot. It’s unlikely that any family stalwart enough to survive 80-plus years on the Front would be defeated by a single storm. Much the same can be said for their livestock.

“They’re pretty hardy animals, and they’re not as dumb as people think they are,” Hall said of his cattle. “They’re going find a place where there’s good shelter to keep out of the wind.”

No matter how resilient they are, Montana ranchers on the Rocky Mountain Front can’t help but worry that some percentage of their herds may have succumbed to the snow and cold; and the impact it may have on calf weights. October is when the largest percentage of cow/calf operations sell the bulk of their animals.

A quarter horse ponders leaving its stall on the Hall Ranch near Heart Butte

“I’m hoping that within a week or so, if it warms up, it will be thawed up enough to where we can maybe start looking for them,” Hall said of his cattle herd. “I’ve supposedly got a bunch of cattle up there, but I’m thinking with this snow, they’re probably making their way down. They might be half way to Dupuyer by now.”

The Blackfeet Tribal Business Council has offered the following information to ranchers concerned about livestock losses due to the past week’s storm.

“Ranchers need to remember if they have livestock losses, to document those losses through photos that are timestamped. People and organizations interested in donating hay can contact the MSU Extension office for the Tribe, Verna Billedeaux or the Tribe’s ARMP department, Will Seeley. You can call (406) 338-7521 ext 2370. We will make information available as it becomes available.”

–Reprinted with permission from the Great Falls Tribune

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Police kill loose cow in downtown Des Moines – KCRG

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Police in Des Moines have shot a cow that officers tried to round up as it rambled across the downtown area and nearby neighborhoods.

Courtesy: KCCI

Police say the animal was found and killed Tuesday night.

The cow was first spotted around 10 p.m. Monday in the East Village area of downtown. Officers tried to catch it for nearly three hours before it vanished into a forested area along the Des Moines River, north of downtown near Birdland Marina.

A police Facebook post says: “We’re cops, not cowboys; it got away.”

Police say they don’t know how the cow got loose downtown.

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New Jersey Man Attacked, Sent To Hospital By Angry Cow With ‘A Little Attitude’ – CBS New York

HACKETTSTOWN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A New Jersey man was sent to the hospital after being attacked by his cow.

According to police in Hackettstown, the 18-year-old was trying to load his livestock into a stall but the ill-tempered cattle wasn’t having any of it Tuesday morning.

“The cow pushed back and charged at him. The man then got knocked into a gate and fell down a concrete ramp,” Sgt. Darren Tynan reported.

FLASHBACK: Police Shoot ‘Highly Aggressive’ Bull After It Attacks Owner In N.J.

The teen from nearby Independence Township in New Jersey was taken to Morristown Medical Center with both head and facial injuries.

“Angus cows can have a little attitude sometimes,” Mike Toretta, manager of the Hackettstown Livestock Auction told the Morristown Daily Record.

“You don’t want to see it, but this cow just didn’t read the book,” Toretta added about the teen’s 1,200-pound attacker.

The young rancher was reportedly awake and alert when first responders arrived. He’s expected to recover from his injuries.

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Charging Cow at Livestock Auction Injures 18-Year-Old in New Jersey, Police Say – NBC New York

What to Know

  • Cops in northern NJ say 18-year-old man suffered head and facial injuries after a cow charged at him Tuesday morning at a livestock auction

  • Hackettstown Police say they received a call shortly after 10 a.m. and responded to the Livestock Auction Market

  • Police say a cow charged at the man who then got knocked into a gate and fell down a concrete ramp, suffering head and facial injuries

Police in northern New Jersey say an 18-year-old man suffered head and facial injuries after a cow charged at him Tuesday morning at a livestock auction.

Hackettstown Police say they received a call shortly after 10 a.m. and responded to the Livestock Auction Market, finding the young man alert and conscious.

According to an investigation, it was determined that the man was attempting to put a cow into a stall when the cow pushed back and charged at him.

Police say the man then got knocked into a gate and fell down a concrete ramp, suffering head and facial injuries.

Chris McGrath/Getty Images

The young man was subsequently transported to Morristown Medical Center. His identity or condition are unknown.

No other information was immediately available.

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Dry cow rations: Rethinking the value of straw – Wisconsin State Farmer

Added as a way to prevent DAs and milk fever, straw in dry cow rations is up for review as new information comes forth: understanding rumen function and its relationship with microbiology allows for an advanced view.

The addition of straw fails to address post-fresh cows and the lingering metabolic challenges producers face from improved forage quality. Forage quality has dramatically increased the past 20 years and postfresh metabolic issues have followed. Data from the World Forage Analysis Superbowl over the last 23 years shows ADF levels have dropped 40% and milk pounds per ton have increased by 108% in alfalfa hay. Quality increases have also been seen in corn silage with a respective 16% drop in ADF and 52% increase in milk pounds per ton over the past 20 years.

These significant increases have substantially elevated the amount of fermentable fiber per pound and the rate of fermentation. This is referred to as increasing energy density per pound. Recognizing fermentable fiber is a carbohydrate, so is corn. The increase in energy density brought on the use of straw in dry cow rations as a way to ward off DAs, essentially filling the rumen (rumen fill) with indigestible fiber that takes up space for days at a time.

A dry cow consumes around 28 pounds of dry matter, far less than a high producing milk cow. The day of calving a dry cow’s consumption drops by 50-75% as she goes through the birthing process. Once the calf is born, the cow’s intake is driven by hunger and available space. In fact, this intake may be as much as 50 pounds of dry matter in one eating period and from completely different forages. The microbiome shift from a dry to milk cow ration takes 7-10 days, or more, with a ration change this dramatic.

The goal of feeding straw in a dry and close-up ration was to create rumen fill with indigestible material, something the cow cannot use, as a way of preventing DAs. But straw may take days and even weeks to pass through post calving, with no nutrient value to the cow, taking up space for energy badly needed post calving.

Straw rations are an expensive pass-through, as straw takes up valuable space from usable nutrients. Straw is a pass-through increasing the cow’s risk of ketosis, slow to come into milk, rapid loss of body condition, and little or poor colostrum.

The new way of thinking is keeping the dry cow ration forages similar in digestibility to the milk cow ration: Using microbiology nutrition as a way to keep the rumen pH and microbiome consistent. Without the volleying of the microbiome and digestive shift, the cow can continue to eat and perform minimizing the risk of metabolic issues. At calving when the demand for energy is at its greatest, the rumen is ready for an energy dense ration preserving body condition and meeting energy demands post calving. In addition, the use of ammonium chlorides and magnesium sulfates to counter levels of potassium allow for this approach to prevent milk fever.

The idea of slowing down fresh cows is old thinking and costly. The new is the use of microbiology nutrition.

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Turkish dairy products now reach 88 countries worldwide – Hurriyet Daily News

ISTANBUL-Anadolu Agency

Turkish dairy products now reach 88 countries worldwide

Turkish dairy products, supplied by half a million domestic producers, are sold in 88 countries around the world, said the head of
an industry group on Sept. 25.

Milk, a nutritious beverage for young and old alike, also creates high economic value and fosters social welfare, Tarik Tezel, head of the Association of Turkish Milk, Meat, Food Industrialists and Producers, told a four-day World Dairy Summit event organized by the International Dairy Federation in Istanbul, Turkey’s commercial capital.

“Thus, the production of milk is a very important economic activity, besides its benefits to our health,” he noted.

He underlined that agricultural production is not just a necessity for feeding people, but also a requirement for sustainable welfare.

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Michigan sheriff offering $500 reward for information in cow shooting case – Detroit Free Press

NORWOOD TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Authorities in northern Michigan are offering a $500 reward for information about the shooting of a cow.

The Charlevoix County Sheriff’s Office said that sheriff’s deputies responded in July to an animal complaint in which a Holstein cow had been shot. Police say the owner reported he heard gunshots, supposedly coming from a homemade gun range in Norwood Township.

Authorities say the $500 is for information that leads to an arrest and conviction of those responsible for the shooting.

More: Oakland County confirms 2 more rabid skunks: Here’s how to protect from rabies

More: Michigan to fight EEE by spraying 14 counties to kill mosquitoes

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Serious problem found with gene-edited celebrity cows – Big Think

  • Hornless bull clones turn out to have questionable genomes.
  • Scientists were so confident they didn’t even look for transgenic DNA.
  • No one’s sure what to do with the offspring.

Given how new direct editing of genes is — as opposed to cross-breeding — it’s not surprising that unexpected complications will arise. What is surprising is the degree of confidence some scientists have in their gene-editing knowledge and skills, and thus the safety of their experimentation. No one’s really sure yet, for example, if China’s He Jiankui really did illegally produce genetically modified twin girls in China last year.

We do know, however, that in 2015, a Minnesota company, Recombinetics , announced that they’d successfully cloned five hornless bulls from gene-edited bovine embryo fibroblasts. Two of the bulls, Spotigy and Buri, became poster children for the wonders of gene editing. Now, according to a new investigation by the FDA, the simple, clean gene splice Recombinetics claimed to have performed was neither. The cattle — Buri has 17 offspring while Spotigy was euthanized for tissue study — possess two antibiotic-resistant genes as well as surprising bits of bacterial DNA.

The arrival of Spotigen and Buri

Image source: ANGHI/Shutterstock/Big Think

Recombinetics’ bulls were heralded examples of gene modification’s potential. Farmers regularly “poll” cows — that is, remove their horns— in a painful, difficult process aimed at preventing accidental injuries in herds and the humans that tend them.

The company used TALENs gene editing (“Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nucleases) to swap out a section of about 200 genes from a Holstein dairy bull for genes from a hornless one.

DNA editing involves cutting DNA with enzymes called nucleases targeted at the desired location in a cell’s genome. Nucleases are proteins, which are hard to work with, so many researchers — including Recombinetics’ — instead introduce plasmids, circular mini-chromosomes that code for the required “scissor.” This causes the target cell to produce the nucleases itself, sparing the scientists the complexities of dealing with unstable protein.

In the case of Recombinetics’ bulls, the plasmids also contained the replacement hornless DNA for insertion at the cut. Coming along for the ride — unknown to Recombinetics — was transgenic DNA, including the antibiotic-resistant genes and a handful of other things from a range of diverse microbes. This wouldn’t necessarily have been a problem if the plasmids hadn’t unexpectedly inserted themselves into the target cell’s genome instead of simply delivering their payload and being done, as planned. Thus, adjacent to its edit site were 4,000 base pairs of DNA that from the plasmid.


Image source: wikimedia/U.S. Food and Drug Administration

At the time the editing was first announced, Recombinetics was very confident that what they’d produced was “100% bovine.” “We know exactly where the gene should go, and we put it in its exact location,” claimed Recombinetics to Bloomberg in 2017. “We have all the scientific data that proves that there are no off-target effects.” In response to the latest findings, however, Tad Sontesgard of the Recombinetics subsidiary that owns the animals, admitted, “It was not something expected, and we didn’t look for it.” He acknowledges a more thorough examination of their work “should have been done.”

Since genetically edited animals may be consumed, the FDA’s position is that they likely require thorough testing and approvals. Recombinetics has publicly complained about such hurdles standing in the way of making animal genetic editing a routine occurrence. (They’ve also developed piglets that never hit puberty.) The company attempted to convince the Trump Administration to take genetically altered animals away from under the FDA.

How the problem was found

Image source: Moving Moment/Shutterstock

Not surprisingly, Recombinetics never applied for approval with the FDA, but Alison Van Eenennaam, their collaborator from University of California, Davis, did inform the FDA of their existence to facilitate exchanges of research insights and data.

Since the surviving edited cattle were being put up at Davis, Eenennaam started thinking about what to do with them. Incinerating experimental animals — and each of these weighs about a ton — costs 60 cents per pound. On the other hand, turning them into hamburger and steaks could reverse that cash flow. Her attempt to win the cows a food exemption from the FDA led to the discovery of the plasmids, though Sontesgard asserts they’d be safe to eat in either case.

And then there’s milk. Brazil agreed to raise the first herd of genetically modified hornless dairy cows. Regulators there had even determined no exceptional oversight was going to be required.

Soon a bioinformatician from the FDA stumbled across the plasmid in a bull’s genome. It’s estimated that about half of Buri’s 17 offspring also have it in theirs. The cows are now absolutely classified as genetically modified organisms, GMOs, not pure cow. Brazil has backed out.

Slowing their roll

Image source: Sergey Nivens/Shutterstock

As science moves forward a few steps, it often has to back up a step or two. Glimpsing a solution, especially to such a complex problem as genome editing, isn’t the same as having one fully in hand, no matter how attractive the reward of getting there first may be, or how much money is to be made. We’re on the edge of a new frontier here, and there are a growing number of similar tales. Scientists do need courage to stretch the boundaries of the known, yes, but humility is also a good idea.

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