The Meat Industry Now Consumes Four-Fifths of All Antibiotics

tl;dr and we worry about using them on people

abx sales infographic 2 The Meat Industry Now Consumes Four Fifths of All Antibiotics

The Sky is falling!

@MoJo:

Last year, the Food and Drug Administrationproposed a set of voluntary “guidelines”designed to nudge the meat industry to curb its antibiotics habit. Ever since, the agency has been mulling whether and how to implement the new program. Meanwhile, the meat industry has been merrily gorging away on antibiotics—and churning out meat rife with antibiotic-resistant pathogens—if the latest data from the FDA itself is any indication.

The Pew Charitable Trusts crunched the agency’s numbers on antibiotic use on livestock farms and compared them to data on human use of antibiotics to treat illness, and mashed it all into an infographic, which I’ve excerpted below. Note that that while human antibiotic use has leveled off at below 8 billion pounds annually, livestock farms have been sucking in more and more of the drugs each year—and consumption reached a record nearly 29.9 billion pounds in 2011. To put it another way, the livestock industry is now consuming nearly four-fifths of the antibiotics used in the US, and its appetite for them is growing.

• Of the Salmonella on ground turkey, about 78% were resistant to at least one antibiotic and half of the bacteria were resistant to three or more. These figures are up compared to 2010.

• Nearly three-quarters of the Salmonella found on retail chicken breast were resistant to at least one antibiotic. About 12% of retail chicken breast and ground turkey samples were contaminated with Salmonella.

• Resistance to tetracycline [an antibiotic] is up among Campylobacter on retail chicken. About 95% of chicken products were contaminated with Campylobacter, and nearly half of those bacteria were resistant to tetracyclines. This reflects an increase over last year and 2002.

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North Korea looking to open to foreign trade

tl;dr NoKo hiring Germans to bring order to autocratic society

The Un 450x432 North Korea looking to open to foreign trade

Has eaten recently. (img by dapd)

@Speigel Online:

On New Year’s Day, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un called for a “radical” economic renewal for his country and an end to decades of conflict with South Korea. Now, a German media report says he is moving quickly to fulfill at least the first pledge.

According to an article to be published on Saturday by the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the communist regime in Pyongyang is preparing to open up the country’s economy to foreign investors. Moreover, it has enlisted the assistance of German economists and lawyers to lay the groundwork for the move.

“There is a master plan,” one of the economists involved in the plan told the paper. “They want to open up this year.” The FAZ did not identify the economist, but noted that he works at a respected German university and that he had advised other governments in Asia in the past.

The economist told the paper that the country is primarily interested in modernizing its laws relating to foreign investment. However, North Korea is not intending to follow the Chinese model, which called for the creation of special economic zones for foreign investors, the economist told the FAZ. “Rather, they are interested in the Vietnamese model, in which specific companies were chosen as recipients of investments,” the source said.

Holy shitballs. Continue reading @Speigel Online.

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5 survival uses for high-proof alcohol

1. Stove fuel: Maybe you have an alcohol-burning camp stove, or your made one like the beer can stove in our survival by beer gallery (link). For that type of stove, you’ll need some very high-proof liquor (like Everclear, if you can legally get it where you live) to efficiently cook your food and boil your water.

2. Wound management: It’s going to hurt, but alcohol could be used as an aggressive disinfectant on topical wounds. This is a pretty rough way to practice field medicine, but it is on the table as a last resort.

3. Pain management: From broken legs to broken hearts, lots of folks find solace in a sip or two of the good stuff. It’s not a perfect pain killer, but it may be all you have in a pinch. Just make sure your booze is the drinking kind. Denatured alcohol, rubbing alcohol, methanol, and many other alcohol products are toxic.

4. Bartering: Whether you drink alcohol or don’t, there will always be plenty of folks around who will want some. In the event of a prolonged disaster, alcohol (along with cigarettes and caffeine) could be a very valuable trade good.

5. Gear disinfectant: You could disinfect your gore-covered knife, the dirty drinking hose to your Camelback, or a host of other filthy things with some high-test booze. Think of it as hand sanitizer for everything else.

And if you’re not going to use it as a stove fuel, it helps start a fire. Although alcohol stoves are lightweight and really clean-burning, meaning that if you’re desperate, they can also be used to heat a tent,  provided you don’t have candles (and cook in it in a pinch). You can spend money on alcohol stoves but they’re simple enough to make, obviously, out of you know, trash.

But they lose points for not listing the best reason: getting blotto in the woods. Duh.

Anyway, 5 survival uses for high-proof alcohol.

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How to prepare for a bacon shortage

Don’t worry, it’s not going to be that bad.

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In Spain, unemployment leads to dumpster diving, leads to locked dumpsters

Madrid Spain A couple of 005 450x354 In Spain, unemployment leads to dumpster diving, leads to locked dumpsters

Romanian scavengers dumpster dive for books to resell which were thrown away in Madrid, Spain, on August 22, 2012 (img by Daniel Ochoa de Olza/AP)

I hear all the time that the US is turning socialist. While there are many government-led social programs and policies in place and have been for decades, the US is anything but socialist. It’s a word that gets thrown around to criticize government, and for all intensive porpoises, is pure hyperbole.

Many people would be hard-pressed to identify it. But here’s an example. Girona, a city in Spain, is installing locks on dumpsters to keep the homeless from eating potentially-spoiled food, for their safety.

“When you don’t have enough money,” she said, declining to give her name, “this is what there is.”

The woman, 33, said that she had once worked at the post office but that her unemployment benefits had run out and she was living now on euro 400 a month, about $520. She was squatting with some friends in a building that still had water and electricity, while collecting “a little of everything” from the garbage after stores closed and the streets were dark and quiet.

Such survival tactics are becoming increasingly commonplace here, with an unemployment rate over 50 per cent among young people and more and more households having adults without jobs. So pervasive is the problem of scavenging that one Spanish city has resorted to installing locks on supermarket trash bins as a public health precaution.

Read the whole thing here.

Still, there is something to be gained. Do you know how to dumpster dive? I mean, it’s not a skill most people practice. Or want to practice. Or would do even if they got paid to do it.

Fortunately for us, there are guides. You want to know what the homeless eat? They eat this stuff.

What is safe to eat?

After all, the finding of objects is becoming something of an urban art. Even respectable employed people will sometimes find something tempting sticking out of a Dumpster or standing beside one. Quite a number of people, not all of them of the bohemian type, are willing to brag that they found this or that piece in the trash. But eating from Dumpsters is the thing that separates the dilettanti from the professionals.

Eating safely from the Dumpsters involves three principles: using the senses and common sense to evaluate the condition of the found materials, knowing the Dumpsters of a given area and checking them regularly, and seeking always to answer the question, “Why was this discarded?”

If it sounds too alien, you haven’t been hungry enough.

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Wildfire Tees

donate a shirt 450x523 Wildfire Tees

You don’t actually have to care about wildfire people these tees are that sexy.

All of our time, designs, and efforts are donated so that 100% of our proceeds go to support victims of Colorado wildfires through the following charitable organizations (50% to each):

Care and Share Food Bank (50%)

Colorado Red Cross (50%)

Both organizations have recently requested monetary support so they can prioritize and address the most pressing needs.  We’d like to help in a big way.

Ah, wildfire season. When sunsets are all gorgeous and asthmatics go all hypoxic and blue in the lips… Remember this year’s wildfires by donning these stylish tees the profits of which go help people who are getting boned by wildfires, ($20).

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