Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years

Living in Wonju South Korea, These Many Long Years: Version 2.0!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Steer! Ode to Korean Beef

Yesterday was the Han Woo festival in Heongsong, where they let you pet cows and pay 8000 won for 100g of tenderloin.  I always thought it would be nice if they let you pet the cow that they'd subsequently slice up for you, but it seems setting up a portable abbatoire takes a little more than hooking up a hose and plugging in a meat cutter.  Anyway, we haven't gone for the last two years, much to the chagrin of the F5sponseree.

Now don't get me wrong: I miss eating Korean Beef.  That shit is tasty.  In the past, I'd happily drop 6-8 manners on enough for a single meal at home, once or twice a year.  But then, something crazy happened. . . .
You can read about some of it here, and here

Nowadays, a lot of people talk about The Beef Protests as more about protesting president Lee Myung Bak's poor policies and heavy handed manner in dealing with domestic issues.  At the time, it was weeks of 100000 plus people filling up the areas around city hall chanting slogans that essentially stated "fuck America".  Did you know that if you kissed someone who had eaten American beef, you too could get mad cow disease?  Or if your child was wearing a diaper that was made from tainted American beef products, your baby could get mad cow disease?  Or that Americans were only selling the worst of the worst beef possible to Koreans since they wanted to undermine them, thus stopping the great Asian advance (spearheaded by Korea) that was sure to come in the next few decades?  These were all typical rumors that were spread during the whole protest. It'll take years to reprogram all those middle and high school students, since they were the ones who typically bought all of that crap hook line and sinker.

The funny thing is American beef is now flying off the shelves, and is the top selling beef in Korea.  It's cheap, what can I say?  I don't eat it however; I find grass fed beef tastes better, so I buy Australian.

For these reasons, I now refuse to eat Korean beef.  Shame really, but I can't in good conscience allow my hard earned cash to be put to such ends.  But if they did let me pick the cow, pet it and then slice it up in front of me, I might reconsider.

1 comment:

Prestigee Korea said...

The Korea beef protests really gave Koreans a black eye that will take a long time to heal. It's not often that an entire society gets out and proves their ignorance to the world on such a large scale.

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