Grass Fed Beef Advantage: Virtually 0% Risk of Mad Cow Disease or E.coli
It has been determined by many scientific experts that cattle contract Mad Cow Disease (Bovine Spongiform Encephalitis or BSE) from eating rendered products from other cattle infected with the disease. While there is still much debate on the subject, the majority of research points to this rendering procedure as the means by which cattle contract the disease. Cattle that are finished in feedlots may have the opportunity to be fed renderings of infected cattle mixed with grain and other supplements in their feed rations. In the case of grass-finished beef no such feed is given to the cattle, so it virtually eliminates the potential risk of the disease being passed on to humans through consumption of grass-fed beef.
E.coli are abundant in all ruminant animals because these bacteria are essential for their normal digestive process. The E.coli from grain-finished animals present the real problem. Feeding grain to ruminants makes their intestinal tract more acidic. Over time, the E.coli have a chance to adapt to this more acidic environment. While the human stomach destroys 99.99% of E.coli found in grass-finished animals, the more acidic bacteria from grain-finished beef can survive the acid bath from our stomachs, and can potentially cause major health problems.