UnNews:Survey shows children don’t know where meat comes from. We show them.
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4 March 2007
Birmingham, England - A new survey shows that an alarming number of British children don’t understand how the food that they eat every day comes to their table. Many children of primary school age think that eggs come from cows, beef comes from pigs and that sausages come from horses. Most distressingly, 80% don’t know the difference between yoghurt and yakult.
“Of course these statistics are a very worrying indictment of modern education’s sidetracking of food science,” says Margaret Pieman, headmistress of Chickendale Primary School in Birmingham, “where are the butchers of tomorrow going to come from, when children aren’t getting a proper grasp of the basics at a young age?” Chickendale School is taking the lead in promoting food technology to youngsters, replacing an emphasis on the three Rs with the three Ms: Mathematics, Mandarin and Meat.
UnNews joined the children of Class 4 as they went on a field trip to the local slaughterhouse. “This is where the magic happens”, declares Mrs Pieman, “the children are going to love it.”
“Now class, who knows what noise pork makes?” asks Geoffrey Hacker, education officer at Hacker & Sons abattoir. Many eager young hands spring up into the air and some call out “oink!”
“No, children, you’re getting pork confused with pigs when they are alive. Live pigs go “oink”, but pork gives out a high-pitched squeal when you slit their throats, like so.” The children sit, speechless, amazed at the wonder of meat. Some disruptive delinquents start screaming, or cry, seeking attention like spoilt, pork-hating brats that ruin things for the rest of the class.
A lot of blood, tears and vomit were spilt on the slaughterhouse floor that day. An awful lot was learnt by Class 4 about the messy reality of meat production. Let’s hope that it’s a lesson that the children won’t forget any time soon.