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Eugene Trufkin: Secrets of the food industry revealed
Your food isn't as healthy as you think it is. Here's why.
On this episode of the Escape Your Limits podcast Eugene Trufkin leads a deep dive into the detriment of modern diets. He teaches us what we need to be doing to improve or boost our immune system, and reveals what you should be eating and where you should be buying it from.
Misinformation and labelling scams are rife within the food industry. Author of The Anti Factory Farm Shopping Guide, Eugene explains the pitfalls behind chicken, beef, fish, and how their diets through the production process are affecting your own. It's not just meat either, as we also learn about how fruit and vegetables can impact our health negatively.
The Escape Your Limits podcast is brought to you by Escape Fitness – a global community of gym design and gym equipment specialists that are looking beyond exercise alone to escape mental, physical and professional limits.
Eugene Trufkin on the Escape Your Limits podcast.
Who is Eugene Trufkin?
Eugene Trufkin was born and raised on an off-grid bio-dynamic farm in the Ukraine. He came to the US thinking that all food was sustainably sourced and manufactured before being enlightened by a seminar from Paul Chek. From that moment, Eugene starting questioning how all food was being produced compared to the sustainable and nutritious upbringing that he'd known.
Today, through Trufkin Athletics, Eugene is a trainer, author and entrepreneur, dedicated to helping people interested in attaining six-pack abs, eating a well balanced diet, and pursuing an anti-sedentary lifestyle.
Eugene prides himself on leading by example. Everything you see him doing, you could easily do as well. Eugene has always wanted the most out of life, and his goal is to show you, through personal experience, that it's 100% possible.
Eugene Trufkin episode highlights.
- Why it's almost impossible to source high-quality food in the US, and in many communities around the world due to misinformation and blurred lines of quality during production.
- How “free range” does not mean that chickens and hens have space to roam and live a healthy lifestyle that's beneficial to both animal and the nutrition of people consuming the meat after production.
- Why ethics and morality doesn't even have to come into the discussion surrounding raising animals for the meat industry, as many methods use marketing spin to hide the negative impact of production on the quality of food for the consumer.
- What “vegetarian fed” means on chicken meat packaging, and why they should be fed an omnivore diet to ensure that the resulting meat isn't causing inflammation concerns for anyone eating it.
- Why genetically modified corn and soy is often used as feed because 80% of a meat farming operation is the cost of food for the animals.
- How there are many underlying concerns in mindset or other aspects of life affect diets and cause a person to have obesity or other physical concerns.
- What foods cause nutrient deficiency due to low nutritional profiles leading to empty calories.
- Why farmers are not necessarily to blame for meat industry misinformation, and how they're scammed by companies and often put them out of business.
- How you're spending way more on NOT eating an organic and healthy diet, backed by statistics.
- What materials are not legally allowed to be used in food due to health guidelines and legislation, but can be fed to animals that will eventually end up as food, therefore affecting its nutritional profile.
- How it's not just meat that is affected by poisonous chemicals and nutritionally detrimental approaches; the fruit and vegetable market also has just as many pitfalls.
- What mindset and mental or lifestyle challenges create incentives for people to seek out food as a source of unconditional love, and why these “story gaps” lead to unhealthy lifestyles, stress responses, and weight gain.
For more insights from fitness industry thought leaders and entrepreneurs, check out the blog homepage.
Full episode transcript.
Eugene Trufkin 0:00
A lot of times when people gain a lot of body weight, I mean that's a symptom of like mental and physical distress in the person's body. That's how it just looks on the outside. But the inside there's there's a lot of distress happening on the inside that leads to that appearance, you know. Welcome to
Matthew Januszek 0:18
this week's escape your limits podcast. And my guest today is Mr. Eugene Trufkin. Eugene is the author of a fantastic book called the anti factory farm shopping guide. And it's a wonderful book, which I recommend you checking out. The reason I wanted to get him on the podcast is because I was looking to find out what we need to be doing to improve or boost our immune system. And Eugene talks about a lot of the foods that we think are doing us good, that we think are organic and healthy, but in fact, they're totally the opposite. And they're actually creating a lot of inflammation, which breaks down our immune system. So if you want to find out all about this, what you should be eating where you should buy it from, then please listen to this podcast and I think is something that you'll really enjoy. Thanks for listening. So thanks for joining us today. Eugene, I appreciate you taking the time. Where are you locked up in at the moment?
Eugene Trufkin 1:09
No, thank you. Thank you for having me on your show, Matthew. I appreciate it a lot. And right now I'm in Irvine, California. So I'm kind of locked but not so much locked in my house. I actually just went for a short walk outside before a meeting. But yeah, I'm in my little living room. Right.
Matthew Januszek 1:25
I'm doing podcasts. Very good. And I heard you share a birthday with another important person in my life. My son, who was who was also had a birthday yesterday. Is that correct?
Eugene Trufkin 1:36
Yep. Yeah, it was my birthday yesterday. So had a nice dinner at home, which is what I usually do anyway, so I kind of rarely eat out.
Matthew Januszek 1:43
Right? Yeah, he was the same like we were. We're making plans for for what to do. And it was very, very simple day with, with all that's going on at the moment. So Happy Birthday for yesterday.
Eugene Trufkin 1:56
Thank you. Thank you.
Matthew Januszek 1:57
So Eugene, give us a little bit of a background on you. You know what, how did you get into the space that you're in at the moment? What was you know what, what caused you to, to take that as a as a career and a passion give give the people are listening and viewing a little bit of background on yourself.
Eugene Trufkin 2:17
Yeah, so in regards to the kind of like anti factory farm book, which we'll be covering today on the show, I guess it's important to start with like I was actually born and raised on an off grid biodynamic farm in Ukraine. And for your listeners that don't know what biodynamic farming is, it's actually what most of them probably have a mental image of when they think of farming. They see like many different animals, you know, like pigs, cows, chickens, geese running around on a farm, like on open pasture, they see like a lot of different crops and vegetations. And usually they kind of see like a small family unit that kind of lives and sustains itself on that farm. So that's kind of how I was born and raised. And basically when I came to the US and I went to the supermarket, For the first time two places kind of like Costco, and I stepped in there, I just thought like pretty much the US has, for the most part mastered biodynamic, super organic farming. It's like look how much like fruits and vegetables and meat they have like all year round. And I just thought they're producing it exactly the same way as we're producing that food on that awkward biodynamic farm in Ukraine. But maybe like, three to four years ago, I ran into a video on YouTube titled, nutrition, the dirt facts, and it was hosted by a guy you guys had on your show a couple times already, Paul check. And basically after watching that video, it is kind of like an anti factory farm type video he described like industrial agriculture, how it kind of decreases the nutritional profile of the food and power contaminates the food or the tremendous amount of synthetic biocides, etc. And basically after watching that video I kind of woke up from the matrix like, quote unquote, the matrix, then I started questioning like, man, the way that they're producing food in the US and kind of supplying those supermarket chains is like dramatically different from how we produce that food on that offered biodynamic farm in Ukraine. And at that point, actually, that's when it became super confusing for me. So, for example, like most people, for the most part, don't care about their health, you know, they don't care about like sourcing high quality food, they just kind of buy the cheapest stuff, which is what I did for longest time because I couldn't even visually tell the difference between like super high and organic and like the factory farm stuff, visually, kind of like all looks the same. But even for the people that are interested in optimizing their health and sourcing high quality food, it's still in my opinion, like almost impossible to source high quality food in the US. So let me kind of like explain and kind of explain that in a little bit more detail. So let's say one of your listeners, hired a registered dietician or nutritionist to help them optimize their goal in their whole entire fitness journey.
Eugene Trufkin 5:14
And among like a variety of things, this nutritionist tells them to buy free range, organic chicken, which seems like a very solid piece of advice, you know, like free range organic chicken, in the person's mental, mental eyes, they're seeing like chickens running around on open pasture, exposed to fresh sunlight, etc, etc. But let's go in and put that piece of advice to work. And let's see what happens to it in the real world. So this person sees the nutritionist the nutritionist tells them to buy free range organic chicken, and 99.9% of people that hear that advice will go to the supermarket. Because rarely do people source from like local hidden farms where you have to go to a specific farm Is market hours during specific times of the week. So this person will go to the supermarket. And they'll see free range organic chicken can buy that chicken thinking it's actually optimizing their health. But let's go ahead and break down what free range organic chicken is these days. So when you see the word, when you see the phrase rather free range, all that basically says we have a warehouse with about 40 to 50,000 hands and they have like a smoke they have access to a small little concrete patio, kind of like a smoke break area where they get to kind of roam free during X amount of days. So on the packaging, it always says access so that doesn't mean they actually go outside. Typically if you go to any of these operations, what you're going to see is 99% of these, or even more percent of these hens are constantly inside and maybe only like 50 or 60 have ever get to eat In the room outside, on the small, concrete patio. So that's what industry free range really means. And if people want to kind of see another cover story, they can find one on, they can kind of Google the intrepid. And it was done by direct direct action everywhere. And it's an animal rights organization. And they basically found a Whole Foods free range chicken supplier, and they planted hidden cameras outside of their operations in Southern California. And basically, I forgot the exact timeframe. But over like six to eight months, they had these cameras just rolling 24 seven, and they didn't see like a single bird outside of any of these free range operations. And whenever they took soil samples, like a single chicken poops about, like five to six pounds of poop per week, so you think if you have about like 50,000 of them in a single shed, you probably get some kind of fecal matter on the dirt if they're going outside, but they couldn't find like any fecal matter in the soil testing, like whatsoever. And that's Not an exception to the rule that is actually how, like the bulk majority of free range operations operate.
Matthew Januszek 8:06
So that's what you meant when you said, so I jump in a second. So you mentioned hold free and so I suppose wholefoods, you think you pay you pay quite a bit of money to get produce from there. So you're saying that a Whole Foods free range chicken is, you know, it ticks ticks the box to say that it's technically classified as free range. But in terms of what what your people's perception is, and what actually the conditions are in is very different. Is that what you're saying?
Eugene Trufkin 8:38
Yes, exactly like in the like in the in the consumers mind when they see the word when they see the phrase free range. They think open pasture, they think these chickens are just running around 24 seven outside where in reality, industry free ranges they typically have about like 1.2 to 1.5 square foot of space per hen, right. And once again, they have like about like 50 60,000 of these hens stuck in In a single warehouse,
Matthew Januszek 9:01
and that's what you have to have. So I want you to think critically. And so that's in order that these definitions that people are able to use them. They're there. They're very specific. And, and so you can quite easily you can qualify for that. But the the conditions of being able to do it are no, it's just just a small patio ready, that they're able to go in and out as when they want. Is that right?
Eugene Trufkin 9:28
Yes, exactly. And the main point I'm getting at is actually this, some of your listeners may not care and in terms of like the ethical husbandry of raising specific animals, they're like, I don't care if they're stuck inside, like meat is meat. But what I'm going to kind of talk about next is in terms of the type of feed that this animal is fed and how bad actually negatively impacts her health. Because when hens aren't running around, outside and open pasture and chasing their food, the farmer has to bring food to the animal because they're kind of enclosed in a specific area. And basically, the type of food they're fed is pretty much nothing but grains and you'll see this actually on the packaging. Typically when you see free range, at the very bottom, you'll also see vegetarian fed. Now, here's where the trick is. Okay, here's where the marketing, here's where the marketing scammers, they're actually telling you when you see free range and you see vegetarian fed on the same label, they are actually telling you it is basically a factory farm confined operation. Because if the chickens are omnivores, they're supposed to eat like bugs, insects, weeds, grass, other vegetation. And they're not they're not vegetarians, but the industry uses the phrase vegetarian because the average American consumer in their mind's eye because of like Netflix documentaries, and all these other documentaries perceive vegetarians is very healthy. So when they see that phrase vegetarian fed on poultry they also think, Oh, this chicken must be very healthy. Well, but the problem is is once again like I mentioned, chicken are are hens are omnivores. To get an idea of omega three to omega six ratio they need to be fed an omnivore diet. But when you see vegetarian fed, what that really means is grain fed. And in this case in our example it's organic green, but green is green. When you feed a chicken, predominantly nothing but corn and soy, it shoots the Omega six which is a pro inflammatory micronutrient way up in relation to omega three. And omega six is an influence inflammatory micronutrient. So once again, this person is going to the supermarket to improve their health. They want to buy this free range organic chicken thinking is doing that. But because these hens are fed nothing but grains and they're supposed to be fed an omnivore diet, they're fed a vegetarian diet. This once again shoots the Omega six way up and it's going to be causing inflammation in the person that's eating bad on a daily basis. Most likely the average person is probably eating that like multiple times a day. And if and if you're listening or looks up like the inflammation theory of disease, they'll see pretty much 95% of disease just arises from low grade chronic inflammation in the person's body. So remember this person went to the nutritionist wanting to improve their health. And they kind of trusted the labels in the sense of like buying that free range organic chicken to help optimize their health, but because their grain fed once again shoes that are maybe a six way up, because the lip lip I don't even know how to pronounce these words they're kind of tough to pronounce but the LA which is an Omega six is found in receipt of a grain and when an animal eats it, and digests it is converted into aa and that's a very pro inflammatory omega six Okay, so just just pause for a moment then on this let's talk about this information for a moment then so
Matthew Januszek 12:54
I'm, I'm trying to keep up with you but so so you've got this chicken says They're sort of free range. And they're, you know, we think they're healthy. And we think that these vegetarian chickens, which also would give you the perception that they're healthy, but they're eating grains, those grains, what you're saying is it changes the the sort of composition of the chicken itself. So when you when you eat the chicken meat, it's it's reacting with you to give information to to give you to inflame your body. Is that is that correct?
Eugene Trufkin 13:31
Yes, that's correct. Any kind of grain fed meats, meats that are fed likes, predominantly grain is going to basically shoot up the Omega six in relation to omega three really quick, I spaced out a little bit before but when you see free range, and you also see vegetarian fed in the same label, I mentioned, oh, the company is not lying to you. They're telling you it's a confined factory farmed operation. I mentioned that because if chickens were truly free range, there'd be eating bugs and insects. So they wouldn't be able to be classic. As vegetarian fed, do you see the trick? That way you can't come after them because they're telling you the truth. They're telling you it is a confined operation because it's vegetarian fed, because if they were truly running outside and they didn't just have this small little cheesy concrete patio where they have access to, there'll be eating bugs worms, insects, like when was the last time you gave like a bird like a worm? And it said like Oh No, thanks. I'm just gonna have this corn and soy instead you know like never
Matthew Januszek 14:26
so certain information then this the meat that it gives you information what your what what uh, what is what are the issues with with that happening as it relates to sort of people that will be eating that then.
Eugene Trufkin 14:40
Yeah, so once again, going back to the inflammation theory of disease pretty much like all diseases arise from like a heightened chronic inflammation in one's body inflammation can come from a variety of our variables, which the average American is exposed to on a daily basis. The average American is working 55 hours a week. Traffic, you know, that's causing inflammation, that low grade chronic stress that's happening every single day that causes inflammation, relationship issues, financial issues, then dietary issues as well it kind of like all adds up into being like a very pro inflammatory lifestyle. So it's just one variable of the whole entire inflammation puzzle, but I think it's a big one because people are eating like a lot of food as well. And my point being is basically this person is trying to improve their health and try and interesting in the label, you know, they're thinking like, Oh, it's free range organic, so it must be really good but in this case, it's not and it's the same thing when you see cage free, that's even worse, because instead of like that small little concrete patio, now they have just nothing they're just locked in a shed. And you have about 50,000 of these hens but they don't even have that small letter coffee patio. And no label is even is even worse than that. Like if you see no label on that or if you see like all natural and sometimes it to make it like a little bit more confusing, but just to make it clear, sometimes people are like, oh, like I buy my chicken from a small farmer like a pasture raised operation. But it's tricky there as well because like, sometimes you have like really good farmers. And then also farmers that aren't that great. So let's say like I visited like a pasture raised operation, and they had like an acre of land. And their chickens do roam outside, like legitimately roam outside. But because they're not rotated on to, let's just say this farmer doesn't rotate the hands on to fresh pasture daily. Once again, if you have about like two or 300 hands on an acre of land, they eat so much food, like they'll eat up pretty much everything on that land, all the vegetation and all the worms, all the insects, and the farmer once again has to rely on bringing the inputs to the farm. So typically what they rely on is, if you don't know the questions to ask is genetically modified corn and soy because it's cheap, and 80% of a farming operation in terms of meat production, and is gonna be the cost of the feed to the animal. So and there's also subsidies. So the taxpayer pays for a decent amount of that feed. So there's more incentive to use that as the feed for the animal instead of like a higher grade feed. So, yeah, so if they're not rotating onto onto fresh pasture, because they're either they don't have the labor for it, they don't want to for any for some reason, or they just don't have land once again, they're going to be heavily reliant most likely on grain. And it's going to cause the same exact issue that we experienced in the free range organic topic. We just we just spoke about in
Unknown Speaker 17:35
a second. So
Matthew Januszek 17:37
yeah, so if you I guess, you know, if you it's people that are concerned with the you know, the safety of the animal side, and then I suppose you got people that are just like, Well, I'm not bothered about that, but I am bothered about it as it relates to myself. You mentioned that there's different forms of information from life, stress, relationships, work, etc. You know, how much of a how much of an impact Does this have on your life? You know if we look at what's going on in the world at the moment where we've got this this Coronavirus, people are picking up this disease left right and center you know does does you know what what how much of a part does it play by having by you know consuming foods that are creating inflammation in terms of you know, being strong and, you know, raising your immunity to, to ward off or at least to reduce when things like this come along.
Eugene Trufkin 18:27
Well, honestly, I don't know in terms of the percentage it's probably going to be very variable from individual to individual but I would say like your diet plays like a huge role, because if you're eating like pro inflammatory foods, that's going to once again create like another burden that your immune system has to deal with on a daily basis. And I know you've traveled the world but especially in the US, I feel like any of your listeners can take me up on this. Like you pretty much walk outside like anywhere in the US and nine out of 10 people you run into are full of like obesity and disease but full of mental and physical pain. So they're ready like on that breaking point, they're ready. Like, at that point, if like one more thing happens, they're like health collapses, you know what I mean? It's not like they're ready like such a healthy individual. And they're able to kind of take like many months of abuse of like a poor diet or like a poor life and still be okay. Like a lot of I think like the average American or 70. I forgot the exact numbers, but 70% of Americans are like on three or four different prescription medications. And like the average, the average body fat is probably like 28% or 29%, which is basically obese. So an obese is kind of like a symptom of basically underlying disease like mental and physical disease that gives rise to that kind of body. It's not just visual, there's something really wrong going on inside that person to create that kind of level. And to create that kind of level of inflammation that causes that type of appearance.
Matthew Januszek 19:53
So So how does that apply? So you took talked about chicken which I kind of gave up many years ago, when I saw it A video a Tony Robbins conference that that wasn't talking about what they eat, but it did enough to put me off, you know, had it What about other things like, you know, one of the popular ones at the moment? Is you kind of grass fed beef and you know, your fish does does it? Does this thing apply to other meats as well then?
Eugene Trufkin 20:20
Yes, of course. But really quick, I do want to give chicken a little bit credit here. If you actually find a farmer, which I haven't been able to yet that feeds them basically like flax seeds, like 1010 or 15% of their diet should be flax seeds, supplements them with crickets, or worms or whatever they grow on the farm and the rescue, like, for example, like alfalfa pellets or something like that their omega three to omega six ratio would be one to one, or maybe even 1.7 to one, which is like very ideal to eat. And that's what they would be eating in their natural world. Because chickens wouldn't have access to all of this grain. If it wasn't for people. It's the grain that kind of shoots up that omega six quite a bit. So I believe like chicken especially chicken eggs, are great to eat and they're a good source of nutrition. But as long as they're not like heavily reliant on grains, and I know we talked about that omega three to omega six ratio, but there are like, other micronutrients that are heavily affected by this, like, I don't know if you know who Joel Salatin is, it's okay if you don't, but he's probably like the most popular farmer in the EU in the US or in the world in general. And he's a world renowned kind of biodiverse, biodynamic farmer. And he basically, him and 14 other legit pasture raised operations had their chicken eggs tested in accredited Portland laboratory, and they had a flute analysis comparing them to factory farmed eggs, they're relying heavily on grains. And what they found is not only there was like 300%, more omega three, which is that anti inflammatory micronutrient that kind of counters the Omega six, but they also found that it had like 900%, more beta carotene, like 500% more vitamin A, a lot of times people are like, Oh, you know, it's like a percentage or two It's not a big deal. No, it's like a huge, huge difference in terms of how the nutritional profile of like a factory farmed egg, for example, compares to the nutritional profile of a biodynamically pasture raised egg in this category. So sometimes also like people, I give grocery store tours explaining this food production practice to people and they come up to me and like, Man, I've been eating this factory farm food my whole entire life and I'm doing completely fine like Meanwhile, the guy's like 30% body fat on like three different medications has all sorts of joint pain. So it does have like a huge impact on your mental and physical health in terms of what you decide to eat. Of course, there are like other variables to optimizing your mental and physical health, but nutrition kind of lays that foundation. So sorry to kind of go off on a tangent I know. You asked about the the grass fed meats, which we'll cover in a second, but I feel that's important to cover because you could get high quality chicken as long as you kind of source it from a good operation that doesn't rely heavily basically on grains.
Matthew Januszek 23:00
So how do you find that there? Because I suppose like say I sort of encourage my wife to, you know, we pay more money, we go to Whole Foods. I think while I'm doing the right thing for my family, what you're saying is, is that it's not a good idea. So where, where do I go and shop now then?
Eugene Trufkin 23:16
Well, really quick we'll cover crop production to but just to kind of hook you in. Walmart produce is actually more nutritionally dense than Whole Foods, right? And we'll cover that when we get to vegetables and fruits. It's kind of interesting why that's the case. And I was also shocked too, because like, for longest time, I shopped at Whole Foods thinking it was like a superior, like the apex of food production, you know, but it turns out for a lot of food groups, it's actually not you probably get nutritionally more dense food at Walmart, for example. But basically, to answer your question your listeners can check out a website called eat wild calm is a very, very informative and good website. And basically at the top left, your reader can go and click on a tab called titled meat eggs. And dairy, it'll show up an entire map of the US. And you simply click on your state and it'll show you every single legit pasture raised operation in your state, you simply click on the one you're interested in, and most of them do two day deliveries. So you typically take the order before Tuesday, and then you'll get the order on Thursday. And with chicken meat in this case is going to be frozen. But that's okay, because frozen meat is always going to be nutritionally more dense than the meat you find out in the display at the store. Because first of all, like they typically slaughter the animal and they freeze it shortly after. So it preserves the nutritional density, where the one on the freshly displayed counter at the supermarket for example, you really don't know how long it's been sitting out there for. So not that it's kind of going to give you food poisoning, but every single day that goes by when the animal is killed when that heart stops feeding, the nutritional profile gets lower and lower and lower and lower in the fact that the nutritional profile is already so poor, as we described, the comparison between wean the pasture raised eggs, and the factory farmed eggs. There's not much lower can go, you know, it's like at the end of the day, at one point you're just eating like basically nothing but empty calories for the most part. And this is why a lot of times you do bloodwork on obese people and deficient in certain nutrients. I'm like, man, how could you be eating so much and be deficient in anything, you know, and you happen to person be like 250 pounds and like 35% body fat and deficient in certain key nutrients? And that's, that is one of the reasons like right there. Um, and what about science?
Matthew Januszek 25:34
I just jump in? If you're not in the US, a lot of listeners are in Europe, for example, where is there anything like that exists in other countries?
Eugene Trufkin 25:46
Yeah, luckily, Europe has an abundance of especially Germany and the countries surrounding it have an abundance of biodynamic certified biodynamic farms? Basically because that's where biodynamic farming originated from. With Rudolf Steiner, so they can go to I haven't been on this website here a long time, but demo.com and once again, they'll have that map. And they'll be able to select like where they can kind of for listener that doesn't know basically today you have a lot of single crop farming systems. So this, this a farmer grows chickens, this farmer grows carrots, this farmer grows corn. With biodynamic farming, you basically have in a self sufficient enclosed ecosystem. So in a single farm, you have a variety of animals and crops, kind of working in synchrony with one another to improve the health of the soil. And they typically grow the crops that they feed back to the animals that kind of lay the manure back into the ground that kind of give rise to those crops again, you see the closed loop? So there is no there is there isn't a lot of inputs, where right now it's like the chicken farmer has to order a bunch of grains from across the country. You know what I mean? They have to bring it over here. There's a lot of transport So there's a lot of like, obviously gasoline and oil that needs that needs to happen, etc, etc. So is it just taking you?
Matthew Januszek 27:08
Yeah. So it's gonna say is it is that doing it that way, then it must be pretty expensive compared to the traditional mass farming, where I suppose it's very kind of efficient, although sounds like it's subsidized, but if you know you're just doing one crop, you can burn through a lot of stuff, a lot of volume, even though the quality is not good. Is that is that correct?
Eugene Trufkin 27:29
Well, it's tricky. So I wouldn't, I wouldn't say totally, that's correct. But it's gotten so tricky and kind of not to get too deviated to the side. But basically, when a person goes into a supermarket, and they look around, they see a huge abundance of items that they can choose from. But because of the deep consolidation that occurs in the agricultural industry, you have about like 10 to 15 companies that are producing in one way or another like all of those items. Okay, so there isn't really that many farms to choose from. And on top of that most of these operations work through what's referred to you might be familiar with this because you're in business but through vertical integration. So vertical integration is basically let's just say like you're a, you're a small chicken farmer and I'm Tyson Foods. Basically, there are two American guys that created the factory farmed industry in 1955, john and Don Tyson, and they opened Tyson Foods, which at one point was the biggest meat Packer in the world. I mean, they dominated the meat industry for a while, until like other players like JBS, like from Brazil got it got involved in all that stuff. But basically, how it works is like I come to you, your small chicken farmer, and I'm like, okay, Matthew. So I'm gonna bring 50,000 chickens to your doorstep on the first of every month, and for six weeks, you're responsible for growing them to my standards. So if I tell you, you have to use these drugs, you have to use those drugs. If I tell you how to feed them, genetically modified corn and soy, you have to do that. I tell you, you have to keep them indoors, you have to keep them indoors. Basically, if I just tell you anything, you have to follow it down to the tee. But in exchange, like I have all these contracts with all these supermarkets and restaurants like McDonald's and Whole Foods or whatever, I have the veterinarians, I have the hundred million dollar slaughter facilities. I have the patents on the genetically modified corn and soy, I have all the trucks etc, etc, and marketing. I'll take care of all that stuff for you. So you can just concentrate on the farm. And this is tempting to the small farmer because this takes a lot of stress off of their hands. You know what it means to have a small farm be like okay, let's do it. That sounds like a good business plan. But then Tyson Foods would come to you and they'd be like, okay, so I see your facility is too small to house 50,000 chickens. We need you to take out like a $500,000 loan and build a bigger facility but we know you're making like 30 to 40,000 a year which is a typical salary for a farmer Don't even worry about it, we have a contract with a bank. And if we send you to them, they will give it to you. It doesn't matter if your credit sucks, doesn't matter if you're not making any money, they'll just give you the loan. And the reason the banks will are so open to giving them the loan, is because through an agricultural Relief Fund, if the they'll collect the interest on the loan, while the business while the farmer is in business, and then if the farmer goes out of business, they will use taxpayer money to pay back the difference of the loan. So for them, it's a win win. They'll get interest while the farmers are business. And if he goes out of business, they'll sell his land back to Tyson Foods, which is how the consolidation happens. Tyson Foods will then just hire a manager to run it and kick this like independent guy out. And basically the bank would be like okay, so we only got 10% of the money back from that. We'll just get the rest of the 90% from the US taxpayer. So you see, it's not so much agriculture in the US isn't so much of a capitalist system. It's more like a fashion system. You're using government money, which is basically the people's money to fund private enterprise, and then sell those products back to people. So it's not quite fair. And guess who doesn't get these subsidies? Those pasture raised operations that are like on you wild.com. They're actually doing the farming right? That rejuvenate the soil that don't deplete like the ecosystem where a lot of resources, stuff of that sort. I kind of went on a tangent, I totally forgot what your question was. But that does that answer.
Matthew Januszek 31:32
It does. Yeah. It takes a whole rabbit hole when but yes. Sounds like a bit of a racket to be honest.
Eugene Trufkin 31:40
Yeah, and that was that's what brings up because one of the that's funny that you mentioned that because there's a good book book called The meat racket by Christopher letter, and he describes this whole entire scheme and the way they do the contracts with the farmers, because the farmers aren't too savvy with all the legal loopholes and that and that, so they totally, totally like to Take advantage of these kind of these farmers. It's like so skinny, it's actually like, I would recommend for anyone to read it because it's like, you just can't wait to turn the next page because you're like, oh, man, I can't wait to see what kind of scam these guys come up with Next, you know, this is like, I don't know, I found it's a pretty interesting read for it's more of like a business book where farming is more of like a background theme, but it's more of like a business book. But basically how these two guys john and john Tyson put pretty much like every farmer out of business in the US and is like, I don't know, it was it was it was definitely like an interesting read. But one thing people always say like, Oh, you know, like organic is more expensive. That's why I don't buy it. And let's go ahead and break that down into two different two different topics here. So one on the ground level, I went to sprouts farmers market, I'm pretty sure you're familiar with that grocery store chain. It's kind of like a higher for your listeners. It's kind of like a higher level organic store that has organic stuff, but then they have a bunch of factory farm stuff as well. And basically I standardized a 2000 calorie diet between the macronutrients of fat, protein and carbs. And for a factory farm 2000 calorie diet. It cost $7 and 77 cents per day. For a supermarket level organic diet, it costs for 2000 calories, it costs $12 and 20 cents per day. So sometimes people will be like, Oh, see, there's a $5 difference right there. I told you, it's too expensive. But now wait a minute, we just covered like all those subsidies, that that though, those companies are getting through your taxpayer dollars. So if you add those subsidies onto it, you'll probably add like another three or $4. And in fact, like all these factory farmed operations will never be able to exist without these subsidies. The subsidies are the only thing that keeps them afloat. If they disappear. The companies will just have to fold and file for bankruptcy like overnight, because the profit margins are so small and literally That's all that's keeping them afloat. Just kind of like the government basically. And the like hundreds of billions of dollars, the agricultural industry floods into Congress through lobbying. Hmm. There's a book called food awfully. I forgot. It was a woman. I forgot the author's name. It's been a while since I read it. But she describes the deep politics behind what I'm talking about. I don't know, like all the legal codes and stuff like that. But if a person is interested in that, that book is a great resource in terms of how these factory farms are actually sustaining themselves because they would never be able to make a profit if it wasn't for taxpayer money. So it looks like that that beef looks a little bit cheaper, you know, compared to the organic beef, but really, if you add that in, it's not that much cheaper. And another thing is, what I found from personal experience is that people that don't eat an organic diet tend to eat out way more. So in a sense, they're actually spending way more money on food. They're getting shittier quality food I don't know how Disney your channel is poorer quality food you know so so
Matthew Januszek 35:08
yeah so with with you mentioned beef then so if we kind of covered the chicken and so is you know the same rules apply them with it yeah with the grass fed beef because you know it's something you hear about a lot at the moment. Yes. Is there bad grass fed beef?
Eugene Trufkin 35:26
Well here's here's the thing. So all cattle are grass fed. So when you see that phrase grass fed it literally means nothing special. How it typically work sooner production cycle. here's here's here's how the scam works in the beef industry. How it typically works in the production cycle is a cow will typically spend about 80 to 85% of its life on pasture, you know, sunshine, everything eating grass, and then typically like 99% of them are then sent to a feedlot. Excuse me, sent to a feedlot, where they're eating had nothing but grain for a few months just to get him get them to fatten up increase the weights that the farmer could sell them for a lot more. So when they say when you see the grass fed label, it literally doesn't mean anything because all cattle are grass fed. But what they forget to say is grain finished. Ah, see, so they're telling you the truth here, but they're not telling you like the whole entire truth. And sometimes people would say like, Oh, my grass is grass fed my the grass fed beef, it says grass fed and grass finished. Okay, let's go ahead and break down how that works. So I could be a ranch, I can be a rancher. And I can feed the cattle grass for like 11 months of its life. Feed them grain for three to four months, finish them on grass for a week and still labeling grass fed and grass finished because it is grass fed and grass finished. But once again, you're I'm not going to explain the deep details because I don't want to warn you you're you still run into those problems with the omega three omega six like I bought volunteer at a legit grass fed operation, like 15 minutes from my house three to four days a month. And the owner of that operation which is five bar beef calm, had a neat analysis done on his beef and his omega three to omega six ratio came in at like 1.7 omega three to one omega six. But with grain fed cows, you typically get one omega three to like eight to 10 to 15 omega six to depending on the operation. So now all of a sudden it became a pro inflammatory food group instead of an anti inflammatory food group. And sometimes people will go like, Oh, you know, like the beef, it says 100% grass fed Eugene, so it's has to be 100% grass fed. But oh, wait, no, not quite. Like I could actually be a rancher send the cattle to a feedlot and feed them nothing but grass pellets and still call it 100% grass fed, and to make it even worse, to make it even more complicated rather than you Wes gets 90% of his grass fed beef from overseas. It doesn't even produce it here. And they label it product of the USA. But here's what's tricky. Legally, I can get beef imported from Brazil, import it into the US, process it and package it into packages in the US and still label that product of the US product of the USA. And you'll see
Matthew Januszek 38:22
that it's practically USA because of the fact that they're actually just finishing it in the USA as opposed to
Eugene Trufkin 38:28
Well, no, they still kill the animal in Brazil, but they import the carcasses here. And all they have to do is chop up and process it into a package. Right. And it can still be like 100% legally labeled product of the USA. And this is just scratching the surface, these endless labeling scams that make it like I mentioned, like you're a health conscious person. And all of a sudden it's become very difficult to do something as simple as source, high quality health promoting food. You know what I mean?
Unknown Speaker 38:57
Matthew Januszek 38:58
so you got it. You got when you got chicken which which is a bit you know difficult to get good chicken you got beef which which sounds like is a real sort of shit show and then so what about fish I know I know you kind of here I've just started to become aware of it I'd seen some stuff on on YouTube about you know you kind of farm fish and even even kind of wild may not be wild they may be wild and farm is that you know we were doing the same thing with our fish and the salmon where we're feeding them with grain as well then
Eugene Trufkin 39:31
yes, but unlike the unlike the chicken and the beef topic, it's honestly not as complicated. So basically for the most part in in fish you have two type of distinct operations you have the fish farming and then you have the wild caught fish operations. Basically they catch them in the ocean for the most part with the fish farming or aquaculture is basically you have three distinct operations in that category. You have ones that are on land, ones that are on the shore, and then ones that are deep out at sea. So typically, it's still like you run into that huge confinement situation like we described in the poetry. So you have like, in this case, like probably a million, let's say, Salomon in a single guy. And what happens you still run into the same problems. If these fish aren't swimming around in the ocean and catching their food, you have to bring the food to them. And typically what they bring to them is just heavy amounts of grain. Again, dirty have that GMO, you have that GMO, it because it's subsidized. It's cheap. It gets the animal grows super fast animal that's fed grain is always going to grow. But for instance, compared to a legit grass fed animal, an animal that's fed grain is always going to go grow way faster. And it it's hard for like a legit grass fed operation. For example, going back a little bit to the cattle to be a supermarket supplier. Because the supply varies. You know, like sometimes you have a lot of crafts and forage that grows because of heavy rains. Sometimes you don't and the people How to raise a single cow from start to finish on a legit grass fed operation, you're looking at three to three and a half years. That's a tremendous amount of time investment, you know, and basically, like legit grass fed operators can't give up consistent supply to the grocery store. So if if a farmer does decide to work with a grocery store, what ends up happening is they end up kind of cheating, basically, to keep up with demand because supply outstrips demand. So the supermarket's like oh, well, we need 1000 we need let's say, like 20,000 pounds of beef. And realistically, you could only supply like 18,000 pounds, so it's pretty close farmer would be like, Okay, let's go ahead and just bring some bins out here to the pasture, full of grain and just kind of leave it so the cows fatten up a little bit, and we can make up the difference and then sell that. You know what I mean? And that happens a lot to like sometimes you see on the label, it says pasture raised, but I could be a renter and just bring these bins full of grains out there and leave them out on pasture and basically what ends up happening is the cattle just hanging out around these bins because it's kind of like candy for the cattle and the grass is like vegetables, of course you're going to pack.
Matthew Januszek 42:08
So you could So what you're saying is you could have cost cost to raise animals, the kind of impart in in the pasture, but there's kind of bins of like you call it like candy that is stuck around for them to sort of binge on or eat it. Yeah, don't get it. But there's cool pasteurize even though they're eating kind of junk food. That probably is what goes on
Eugene Trufkin 42:33
Unknown Speaker 42:34
that's what goes on. Yeah. And you're allowed to label it. Your lead pastor recorded,
Eugene Trufkin 42:38
because this pastor is it's out on pasture. They're not lying. You see it, you see how tricky it is? And they know what they're doing. It's not kind of like, Oh, I accidentally did that. You know what I mean? It's like, dude, you've been around for 30 years. Like, you're not accidentally doing that, you know? And that's why it's become so hard. That's why I have to volunteer at this place. Just to know I'm getting legit grass fed beef, you know? Yeah. And I show up there like randomly three days, three to four days a month without notice. And that's how I know. They're actually grass fed, you know?
Matthew Januszek 43:12
So So God
Eugene Trufkin 43:15
sorry. So really quick. Yeah, yeah. Yeah Really quick for your listeners, they could check out a website called American grass fed org. They're actually a third party certification body that does on site inspections because right now in order to be certified grass in order to claim grass fed, you literally just have to say on grass fed and fill out our paperwork and say it and send it in. There is no on site inspection. They just kind of trust you. And that's it. That's all the certification processes. So when you see ag a certified beef, that basically means they have that certification through American grass fed which does on site inspections, and they also reserve the right to do unannounced inspection once a year. So that is also if they don't have like the time to go to a farm like I did, for example and volunteer there, they can outsource that job to places like American grass fed.org. your listeners can go to that website, they can scroll to the bottom, they'll have an interactive map, they can click on that map and they'll show you all the certified grass fed operations near your house. Just like with the wild calm website. Okay,
Matthew Januszek 44:22
yeah. So, so going back to the fish, then you so you said you've kind of got this the inland where you've got like the millions of fish in a small net and they're eating, they're being transported grain. What is it? What what's the sort of better version of that if there is one and how do you how do you find out for your fish then?
Eugene Trufkin 44:44
Well, your listeners can check out a cool website called vital choice, calm day source, just high quality fish for the most part from Alaska. Right. And they do a similar kind of delivery process like you order it like typically on Tuesday and then they deliver usually On Thursday or Friday so that's that'd be the best choice typically in terms of farm raised fish if you see Atlantic Salomon that's farm raised like 99.9% of Atlantic salmon is farm raised Fisher I know the user sees that fish on the logo jumping around in the ocean but it's one of those like really zoomed in pictures where it's really in a container but it's jumping out of that you know, I just a joke but um shrimp are heavily farm raised like the bulk majority of shrimp are heavily farmers and anytime you see tilapia it's like 100% farmers right? There's no like wild caught tilapia.
Matthew Januszek 45:34
So with the fish and DD get much wild, and if you do, is it really, really wild or is it wild farmed? Is and and and if it's farm, does it always grain fed? And there's a few questions.
Eugene Trufkin 45:50
Yeah, so Okay, so in terms of the feed, it could be predominantly grain fed, but sometimes they use like a mixture of grounded up small fish or leftover fish. parts, and they mix it into like a pellet, which is typically mixed in with soy, because they need grain in there to get them to grow fast without that the animal just grows too slowly. But the problem with that is they need to use preservatives for these pellets. And typically what's used, for example, is intoxicating. So toxic gene is like a preservative chemical made by Monsanto. They're a company that's notorious for developing chemicals that kind of have destroyed the ecosystem and the lives of many, many farmers over the years. And it's not allowed to be actually legally used in food, but it's used in the pellets that are fed to the fish can make it into the nutritional profile of the fish, and then you end up eating that fish. And that's a little troublesome, I mean that the doses are in trace amounts. But here are three myths that typically because when I give group grocery store tours typically like a lot of people know that there are chemicals used on their food, especially if they buy the factory. farm stuff, but there are three myths that kind of keep them on the cycle of keeping to buy that food. The one the first myth is the government would never allow unsafe synthetic biocides, or like pesticides to be used in the food production system. Okay, the FDA wouldn't allow that. Let's go ahead and break that down. Let's see what's actually required to get like a chemical compound a synthetic pesticide past and be able to be used on food that your kids eat that you eat, pretty much everybody eats. Okay, so first and foremost, there are two different distinct chemical compounds. In an entire formulation. There's the active ingredient, which is kind of the main thing. And then there's also an inactive or inert ingredients, which kind of help increase the potency of the active ingredient and the lifespan of that ingredient so you can kind of spray it on the crop and it sits there for a very long time. It doesn't kind of just wash away very quickly. So in order to get past for safety testing, all the chemical company has to do Just test the active ingredient in isolation on its own, they never have to test the entire formulation for safety. So obviously, when you take out those inactive ingredients, which are meant to make the active ingredient stronger, it will most likely pass that safety threshold. You know what I mean? But then that's not how it's being used in real life is being used as a complete formulation in real life. If your listeners want to check out, they can go to pubmed.gov and find Sara Leni labs, and he's one of very few researchers that actually test the lethality of complete pesticide formulations. And every single time you'll see it's thousands of times more potent in the presence of those inert ingredients right. And to make it worse is it like in a single tomato production cycle you're using, you can have on you can have on the facility like anywhere between 10 to 15 different chemicals that you use within a single season. You're not using like a single active ingredient in a formulation on its own, you're using this huge cocktail of different drugs like synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, or dentist. It's endless. They have maybe like, I don't know, like two or 3000 different chemicals that are allowed to be used in the production cycle. And the average newborn in the US is already born with trace amounts of 200 different chemicals in their bloodstream. Okay, so then you have another problem, you have this cocktail of drugs that have never been tested for safety. And typically, when these drugs come together, they create new drugs. You know what I mean? And you hear people of pharmaceutical overdoses always overdosing, like, the doctor, doctor gave them this drug, but this one, give them another one, this one, give them another one that you're taking all of these together, and then all of a sudden they die. No, there is no safety testing whatsoever done are complete formulations. And more importantly, there's no safety testing done on how these myriad of complete formulations work in synchrony with one another to create a more lethal cocktail. Mm hmm. Another big one. So another big myth. Yeah,
Matthew Januszek 50:05
just on that I'll jump in then. So I don't know whether you know, know the answer or whether you've ever heard anyone that does have the answer. But so I guess we, you know, we're putting, we're putting food in there that's meant to be nutritious and be, you know, kind of helping us to recover and grow. And then there's, there's a big percentage of this, these chemicals that do different things, you know, what, what are your thoughts on on the chemical part that we're putting into it? You know, do you think that is something that you know, outside of just inflammation, which is obviously not great? Do you think that's that's causing or potentially causing other things and diseases to, for us to be susceptible of because of this that seems to be throughout the whole of our food system?
Eugene Trufkin 50:51
Yes. And that goes into Myth number three, I'll pass over number two in a second. But Myth number three is a lot of times people are like, oh, like I can't even see the chemicals on To produce Eugene, like, who cares, you know, it's so small, it's not going to have an impact on my health. But most of these chemicals actually have like a negative impact on your hormonal system in one part per trillion. So that's one drop in three size Olympic sized swimming pools. Okay, and it's just like another burden that your immune system has to deal with. So we talked about already how unhealthy the average citizen is in the US. And this kind of like goes into that equation. You know, like, obviously, you have these long hours at work, you might have some marital issues, you might have some financial issues, you're stuck in traffic, that kind of spikes of cortisol again, you're so far detached from your hunter gatherer days, you know, in terms of how like a human being should actually be living, that's causing, like a tremendous amount of stress, stress. And then on top of that, you're in taking all these harmful biocides, that's adding, like more burden on that immune system, you know, so you're gonna be more likely to get more sick, have more chances of developing cancer, you know, you have like a chronically suppressed you system basically, right? So of course, you're going to be more susceptible to pretty much anything that comes at you in life. Mm hmm. Yeah. And then one, the second one really quick. And I think this one's important. The myth is, like most people think they can wash off pesticides on the produce where you can.