A Poem: ‘Swedish Meatballs’

 

Bovine Respiratory Disease;

the most common illness of beef cattle in the

world.

 

Calves lose appetite;

develop fever;

experience breathing difficulties.

 

In some feedlots,

more than half will die.

 

Luckily, antibiotics help.

A veterinarian can advise on the right

treatment.

 

IKEA says its meatballs are free of

antibiotics.

 

If it means

animals were treated but

no drug residues were left at the time of

slaughter,

how is that different than any other

meat?

 

If it means

animals were never given these

medications,

what did they do

when a cow got

sick?

 

 

(Editor’s note: poet Shai Ben-Shalom, an Israeli-born biologist, examines current events in the Blacklock’s tradition each and every Sunday)

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