It appears that Steve, the herd manager, has been treating the cows with homeopathic treatments to ward off flies and ease stress. The blog even claims that:
"the use of homeopathic treatments not only helps to develop a more robust immune system, it also means no withdrawal periods for milk and meat while the animal is being treated, as would be the case when antibiotics are used."
Anyway, I thought up three possible reasons why Steve likes to use homeopathy:
- As stated in the blog, giving the cattle antibiotics to clear up infections means they would not be able to use the milk and meat from the cow whilst it is undergoing treatment. Whereas pretending to treat the cattle with magic water that has no active ingredients (or proven medicinal effect), means that Yeo Valley can maximise their profits.
- Yeo Valley's market research department have determined that their key market respond well to terms like "organic" and "natural" and probably think that homeopathy is a nice natural form of herbal remedy and are too stupid to realise they are simply giving their cattle inefficacious pretend "remedies" that contain bugger all.
- Steve, really is credulous enough to believe that giving magic beans to poorly cows will make them all better.
Perhaps you can think of some more, or you could try an leave a comment on their blog, but I suspect they just publish the nice comments from the deluded people who support their pseudoscientific nonsense.
or you could say hello nicely on Twitter: @yeovalley
Since posting this a number of people have contacted me to say they have left comments on the Yeo Valley blog, although I see none of them, including my perfectly friendly question, have passed moderation and been published. It seems Yeo Valley are only really interested in your comments if you happen to agree with their irrational alternative medicine policy.
I also received a copy of an email trail between a FB friend and Yeo Valley, which conisisted of a polite enquiry about their homeopathic policy, followed by a standard fob-off answer that did not address the question. My friend then followed the response up with a second email pressing them for information as to why they thought homeopathy worked, however it looks like the "Too hard" light must have come on in the marketing department, so they chose to simply ignore the follow up letter.
Oh, well, I suppose I'll have to boycott Yeo Valley, which is a real pisser because their mango and vanilla yoghurt is actually really nice. Bloody principles.
See Also: Another attempt to make the Soil Association see sense.