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Protein Makes Cattle Sick

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Despite earlier fears and trade disputes over Brazilian beef, free-range South American cattle are healthier than intensively farmed North American and European livestock. That's the opinion of Bolivian cattle rancher Edward Luttwack.

Despite earlier fears and trade disputes over Brazilian beef, free-range South American cattle are healthier than intensively farmed North American and European livestock. That's the opinion of Bolivian cattle rancher Edward Luttwack.
He cites problems like European subsidies, limited green pasture and a push to speed up weight gain and birth cycles. As a result, cattle in the North are fed high protein cereal concentrates and pre-bloom alfalfa that are too rich for herbivores.

Cattle cannot properly break down the excess protein. They suffer bloating, chronic diarrhea and acidosis. This weakens their immunity, exposing them to pneumonia, diphtheria, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, parainfluenza-3, clostridia, coccidiosis, pinkeye, cancer eye, footrot, lumpjaw and laminitis.

"Nearly all beef cattle in North America and Europe only survive in a chronic state of low-level sickness and with large amounts of antibiotics," Luttwack says. "Animals could not survive a week without them."

--Globe and Mail, February 12, 2001

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