Animal welfare groups are applauding what might be the only upside from the Coronavirus pandemic – a reprieve for certain types of livestock normally destined for the nation’s fast-food sector.
“We’re talking about the old dried-up dairy cows and sows, the bulls past their prime, poultry layers no longer producing eggs at an economic level after one year and the old ewes that have given up their last fleece,” one animal lover told The Bug overnight.
“These sad groups with their used-by dates clearly obvious are normally in high demand as hamburger patties, pie mince, sausage roll filling and hot dogs. It’s a distinctively Aussie flavour that comes from using their hooves, lips, ears and various viscera and just a small amount of any real meat left on their scrawny carcasses for the mixture to be legally identifed as ‘meat’. The rest goes to petfood.
“Few people would know that the word ‘mince’ as in pie mince is actually an acronym ‘mainly innards, noses, chins and ears’.
“These animals are now looking fairly safe, and it’s all because there’s an estimated six million tonnes of unconsumed hamburgers, hot dogs, pies and sausage rolls across the nation in the wake of the indefinite cancellation of major sporting events, agricultural shows, theatres, conferences and all sorts of social and community events.
“All this ‘food’ will have to be dumped and there will be absolutely no need for fresh supplies for quite some time. Demand as a result has dried up and saleyard prices for the types of animals that go into these fast foods have plummeted and will remain low for months possibly. (The Bug can confirm that a 12-year-old Jersey cow fetched only $1.80 a kilo liveweight – half the normal price – at the Gympie cattle sales last Friday).
“So we’re calling on farmers and graziers to let these animals live out their lives peacefully and comfortably, considering their earlier unselfish service to their owners.”
A spokesperson from the United Graziers Association of Queensland put the kibosh, however, on such sentiment.
“We have a solution to any problem when the saleyard price makes it unprofitable for a farmer or grazier to load their stock onto a truck and take it to market.
“It’s called a rifle.”
Update: The Bug has been advised that the tens of thousands of Dagwood Dogs that will now remain unsold with the cancellation of the Royal Sydney Show can be stored indefinitely at room temperature as they contain no meat or any other material for that matter that could go more rotten than it already is.