Musings on….. King Corn ~ Movie Review


I watched the King Corn Movie last night [4-19/2009]

It was really good. Slow but good.

Two friends who have roots in Iowa decide to go back to Greene, Iowa and plant an acre of corn to see how its done and see where the corn goes after its picked.

After planting and harvesting, they find they are in the hole for several tens of dollars, but the government is there to subsidize their offering.

The corn tasted terrible and isn’t edible until it is processed. Half of Iowa’s corn goes to feed cattle and the rest to processing into, well, processed foods.

The reason antibiotics get fed to cows is because their system can’t digest the 60 to 90% corn diet and to fight off infection from being held in feed lots.

Some baby cows go up eating grass and running free, but as soon as the cattle rancher or slaughterhouse buys them, they go into a feed lot and are held for 150 days, in tight quarters, unable to move and are fed constantly. To gain weight, and if they move too much they don’t gain the weight. After the 150 days they are  shipped to their death.

The first of the movie was very interesting. They take a hair sample and have it analysed. They come to find out that the amount of corn in their hair is very high.

So they set off to find out what foods have corn in them.

I heard somewhere that the 2 guys tried to eat corn-free for a determined amount of time. Don’t know if they were successful. but Jesse and I are going to try it. Tomorrow, Thursday the 21st.

I will let you know the results!

Update: Thursday: Jesse ate cereal. I ate licorice. It has corn syrup in it.  We messed that day up before lunch time! We will try again.

5 responses »

  1. I can’t speak for the beef side of things, but in the dairy industry no antibiotics are allowed in the milk, so any animal that is getting antibiotics has their milk thrown away while they are on antibiotics and for a period of time afterwards until their milk in antibiotic free. My uncles recently had to dump a whole tank of milk because a cow with antibiotics got milked with the rest of the herd. All that to say I don’t think the use of antibiotics in dairy is widespread. It is used to treat mastitis, but the resultant milk never makes it into the food chain.

    ~~ so where did the milk go when they dumped it? and how do they keep milk flowing from the cows? do they have to keep them pregnant and having babies? and where do all the babies go when they are born?

    Antibiotics certainly are used in young stock to treat sicknesses, but in my experience you give it to only those who need it. Just like with kids, you give medicine to those who are sick.

    ~~while your families farms are ethical, many big factory farms are not, they pay no attention to the health of their animals or the public they sell to. the bottom line is Profit

    The feedlots you were refering to for “finishing” is also a bit inaccurate in terms of the size limitations. What is meat? it is muscle. The finishing is to put the fat or marbling in the meat so it isn’t so tough/dry, but if the bovine movement is restricted I’m assuming the muscles would atrophy. The feedlots I saw when on animal science classing in the lovely state of IA weren’t pretty grassy fields, but they were cetainly not as you indicated seeing in the movie. There is no way to drylot animals that closely for 150 days and not have problems with manure. A cow covered in wet crap will get sick and will not gain weight either in fat or muscle and will loose the farmer money. The conditions you describe would only be used by a farmer who had no desire to make any money, his animals would loose weight or die.

    ~~again, some feed lots may be good, but they really do keep them up to 150 days, not moving around and eating. grain. Not something they should be eating. The owner of the feedlot was the one making those comments on the movie. watch it!

    I’m sure I’m biased, but I can assure you that those who made the video also came to it with a preexisting bias that they want to show their viewers.

    ~~watch the movie….. 🙂

    Join the “dark” side Kristina 🙂 But even if you don’t rejoin the rest of us flesh eaters, and some of you posts drive me nuts as a former dairyman, we love you anyway!

    ~~ there is no dark or light side of the vegetarian issue. only healthy and green VS not.
    i applaud your family for being aware of the animals they use for human consumption and the care they use. But the bad outweighs the good in factory farming on humans, animals and our earth.
    xoxo, love you too meat eater 🙂

  2. Timbow’s in the meatrix! Timbow’s in the meatrix!

    ~~ Heh Heh Stuart, I have seen those videos!!

    • No, it would not be wrong, its possibly the best way to eat corn, better than drinking a soda [corn syrup] are you really gonna watch it? you can get it from netflix

  3. Q.~~ so where did the milk go when they dumped it? and how do they keep milk flowing from the cows? do they have to keep them pregnant and having babies? and where do all the babies go when they are born?

    A. The milk goes down the gray water drain that goes to the manure pit, which now goes to a methane plant. Yes, cows have to continue to have calves to continue giving milk. Milk production decreases after a couple months of milking. The cows are “dried up” for a while before they have their next calf and then are milked again after they give birth. Heifers are kept and raised as future cows, and the bulls are sold.

    As for the “dark” side I was refering to your view of the carnivores. When we have the vegetable share in the summer we have so many veggies we really don’t eat much meat. In the winter we eat more meat.

    You can certainly say that too much meat might not be good for you, and that there may be unethical farmers out there, but be careful not to elevate animals to human status. God’s preists were provieded with portions of both meat and grain from the daily sacrifices. I think that this indicates it is not unbiblical to be a carnivore. I think that Acts 10 also refers to more than just the inclusion of gentiles into the kingdom of God, although it certianly talks about that.

    I don’t know if we will have meat in heaven. Adam and Eve were probably vegetarians…before the fall at least. Can you have meat without death? Not on earth…Maybe it will be a very meatlike tofu…or maybe God will give us steaks that didn’t come from bovine just like Jesus could have turned the rocks into bread.

    If your only concern with meat, eggs, and dairy is how the animals are treated I know people who can get you some good grass fed beef, you can buy free range eggs, and they have raw milk are Marlenes in Tacoma (I’ve been told).

    My father-inlaw worked at packing plant until recently because he could no longer afford to farm without taking goverment money which he was unwilling to do. So I am familiar with that side of things as well. I know that not everything is perfect in agriculture, but I also know that there are good producers who work a lot harder than me to produce a good, ethical product and it bugs me when you lump them in with the rest.

    We are going on a homeschool tour of my Uncles farm later this year. Your invited it you want to see what happens at a real working dairy. Hopefully they are still in business then…

    God Bless,

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