Monday, 11 March 2013

Horses for courses

A horse walks into a pub

Barman : Sorry, we don't serve food in here.

Yeah, you've no doubt heard them all by now. If anything was more guaranteed to turn a nation to vegetarianism, parcelling up horsemeat with mechanically recovered traces of beef protein and calling it a burger was always going to get near the top.

We shouldn't be surprised, just what did we think those 99p pack of 8 burgers contained? Hardly prime beef. The only real thing that's surprised me over the past few weeks is that kebabs were supposed to contain beef. Surprised me anyway, I always thought they were lamb like meat. I have to admit I do eat the odd kebab, while I was under no impression they were either good for you or top quality meat, I thought at least it was lamb. Turns out they can also contain beef, chicken and veal. Oh yeah and pork.

So what do we do? The mad rush for cheap food, and let's face it we're all guilty of seeing special offers and filling the trolley, supermarket's rush for bigger profits and animal feed going through the roof because of poor harvests and EU laws on Biofuel production, this was always going to mean either a rise in price or lowering of quality. We shouldn't really be surprised. At least it was just horses and not rats or badgers or whatever.

As to actually eating horses, we do seem to be nearly alone in Europe in being horrified at eating them but also considering it fine to feed them to cats and dogs and for use in glue. We like our meat un-petlike and farmed specifically for the purpose. And even then, we don't eat it all. How many baulk at eating liver, kidneys and other offal. I've always taken the view that less cows have to die if I eat steak and kidney pies one night, cottage pie the next, liver and onions the next, Haggis, etc etc etc. So we won't eat liver but will eat lasagne or sausages with minced up by-products and god knows what else. After all this, it turns out, I could have just eaten burgers every night and consumed every part of a cow, except maybe actual minced steak. And, if I'd done that, I'd have helped reduce the bouyant East European stray horse problem.

The future? I suppose until we forget all about it, we'll either spend more on better quality meat or the supermarkets will keep the price the same and force more farmers out of business.

Start with a joke, end with a joke, so...

I went into a cafe the other day and ordered a burger. They asked me what I wanted on it. I said a fiver each way.

I'm here all week...


  1. Nice digs Charlie. Looking forward to seeing how you furnish the new pad.

  2. Thanks for journeying over, Kym. It needs a bit of sprucing up, but I'll slowly get there.