Earlier, I wrote about the Internet sensation known as “fluffy cows,” otherwise known as show cattle A.I. sires. From my first comments on the online intrigue at my blog, to my interview with fluffy cow marketer Matt Lautner, I’ve been getting lots and lots of feedback on this story.
To know what people think about this issue, you can picture basically three camps. Well, four if you count my wife, who commented “Some people have too much time on their hands.”
“Which people?” I inquired: “The ones making the cows fluffy,” she replied.
Okay, so The Fetching Mrs. Vance notwithstanding, there are basically three reactions to this story among people in my social circle. First are the people who say this is great publicity for agriculture, and who, like the Lautners, are turning the sensation into an opportunity to evangelize about all the great things there are to love about the beef business.
Second, you have the folks who think this is really, really, really bad for the beef business, because the show cattle segment is sort of the dirty little secret, or the seedy underbelly of the beef industry. These folks, including some commercial cattlemen and seedstock producers I really, really respect and admire, have a great point: there are some pretty big differences between show cattle and cattle we breed and feed “for reals” (as the kids say these days).