CATTLE AND HOGS 83. Where these animals live.—If you go to the grocery store and read the label on a can of tongue or ham or beef, you will usually find that it came from some place in the North Central States. Perhaps the label says Chicago; it may say Cincinnati, Kansas City, Omaha, or Minneapolis. In all of these cities there are large factories where meat animals are killed and prepared for the butcher shop or canned ready for the table. Let us see why these industries are located in these cities.
84. Pigs and recall that the wheat farmer sells most of his wheat. The corn farmer has a different plan. Instead of selling his corn, he feeds most of it to the cattle and pigs; and when they are fat, he sells them to the meat packers in the cities. Look at the swine map (Fig. 100) and the corn map (Fig. 79) and you will see that the pigs live in the corn states where they can be fattened on the corn that grows there. The corn farmer often buys lean cattle from the states farther west and southwest, fattens them on his corn (See Fig. 76) and hay and grass, and then sends them away in freight cars to Chicago or Kansas City, to be sold.
85. The pig Many American school boys belong to pig clubs. Each member of the club raises a pig as directed by the teacher of agriculture in his school, or by the county demonstration agent—a man hired by the Government to help the farmers to learn the best way to do their work. A farmer boy in Pennsylvania paid $9.00 for a pig that weighed 47 pounds. In 147 days the pig weighed 302 pounds, had eaten $30.00 worth of feed, and was sold for $59.02.
86. Shipping a city butcher shop, you may see a little round purple -- - mark on a quarter of beef or on a carcass of mutton. This is the stamp of the United States Government inspector, who puts it there to show that the animal is healthy and good to eat. If you live in Boston, New York, Philadel phia, Pittsburgh, or in one of many other Eastern cities, you will probably find that the meat came from Chicago.
In the big meat packing plants, not a scrap or a drop of anything is wasted. Even
the blood is made into chicken feed and fertilizer. Small pieces of bone, such as we throw away at home, are made into buttons, and the bone shavings are made into bone dust for fertilizer. Grease that is not clean enough to eat is made into soap, and meat that is not fit for man to eat is made into chicken feed. Alto gether, several hundred different products are made from one pig or ox. Cars called refrigerator cars, with a closet full of ice at each end, carry fresh meat from Chicago and Kansas City all the way to New York and Boston, even in hot weather. At these cities, some of the meat is regularly put on steamships and sent to Europe.
87. Meat from distant places.—If you should go into a grocery store in England, France, or Holland and look at the labels on the cans of meat, you would find them, even there, marked " Chicago", " Omaha", and "Cincinnati". But there would also be others marked with names of places in Australia, Argentina, and Uruguay In Europe, not enough meat is produced for all the many people. Meat is brought to them in ships from other continents where there are not so many people to eat the meat which those countries produce. Australia does not have very many cattle, but since it is a large country, with fewer people than Belgium, there is beef to spare. Many shiploads of beef go from Sydney, and also from Wellington, New Zealand, to London and other English cities. That is a very long journey. If you look at the globe you will see that it is half way around the world. The ship must go through the hottest part of the world, too; therefore, the meat is frozen hard before it is put into the refrigerat ing rooms in the great ships.
The people of western Europe now get more beef from South America than they do from the United States. Three countries of South America—Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay—are together nearly half as large as the United States. These countries have wide, treeless plains covered with sweet grass which is good for cattle to eat.