Beef industry and the public

For my final required blog, I’m going to talk about my project topic a little bit.  In about 30 minutes you will all hear my presentation, but 10-12 minutes is a short time and I’m going to be leaving some things out.  So I figured I could put my thoughts here instead.

I looked at the use of hormone implants for growth promotion in beef cattle and its human health, environmental, economical, and social impacts.  In the presentation I will hit pretty hard on the first three of these but not so much on social impacts.  While doing my research for this project I didn’t really see many social impacts show up in literature or fact sheets, but after my interview and thinking about it for a while I recognized some.  I interviewed a rancher in California that raises grass fed beef and doesn’t use hormone implants.  I thought it was really interesting listening to him because he wasn’t so much concerned about the practice of using implants, or the human health and environmental impacts, all he cared about was his costumers.  He kept saying that he’s raising what his customers want, and they don’t want hormones in their meat.  He thinks that a lot of farmers have lost touch with their consumer, and instead of listening to what they want, they just tell them what they are going to get… cheap beef.

Does this look similar to something we’ve talked about this semester??? Maybe how engineers and scientists don’t communicate with the public either?

Farmers and ranchers consider themselves experts in what they do, and for good reason.  As in any business there is a lot to know about raising beef cattle and the people who run the industry are extremely good at it.  Just the way scientists and engineers are knowledgeable about what they do.  So it seems that what people learn a lot about one thing, they no longer want to listen to the public about that topic, even though the public is the consumer and their wants and needs should be considered in management decisions.

I hope this will change in the future and farmers start communicating and listening better to their consumers.  Just as I hope engineers and scientists will listen to the public and those they serve.

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