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Sheridan's Frozen Custard is a popular stop in Kansas City's hot weather (Sheridans, via Twitter)
Sheridan's Frozen Custard is a popular stop in Kansas City's hot weather (Sheridans, via Twitter)

Even as government officials brace for a recurrence of bird flu this fall, the massive spring outbreak is still affecting food producers.

Kansas City residents, flocking to local favorite Sheridan’s frozen custard stands because of this week’s heat wave, are met with notices that the custard recipe has been changed because of an egg shortage.

“Federal regulations require frozen custard to contain at least 1.4 percent egg solids by weight,” the signs say. “Due to the egg shortage caused by the avian influenza outbreak, our dairy is currently unable to purchase enough eggs to meet that standard, requiring a slight change in our product recipe."

JBS USA's headquarters in Greeley, Colorado. (Stephanie Paige Ogburn/KUNC)
JBS USA's headquarters in Greeley, Colorado. (Stephanie Paige Ogburn/KUNC)

A federal lawsuit that alleges Colorado-based meatpacking company JBS USA engaged in wide-scale discrimination against Muslim employees is heading to trial.

U.S. District Court Judge Philip Brimmer denied the company’s request for summary judgment in a case that stems from 2008, when the company’s Greeley beef plant fired Somali Muslim employees who requested that breaks be scheduled to coincide with prayer time during Ramadan, a month of the Islamic calendar that requires daytime fasting and prayer.

In 2010, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency that enforces workplace discrimination laws, filed two lawsuits against the company, one in Colorado and one in Nebraska. The Nebraska case was decided in JBS’s favor. The Colorado lawsuit, which accuses the company of engaging in a pattern of religious discrimination, has been winding through the legal system.

17-year-old Emily Lambrecht has been showing cattle at the county fair since 2009. (Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media)
17-year-old Emily Lambrecht has been showing cattle at the county fair since 2009. (Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media)

Show day at the Pierce County Fair in Nebraska starts early and goes fast.

I arrived around 9 in the morning, but Emily Lambrecht had already spent an hour and a half in the wash stalls, scrubbing and shampooing her calves so they would sparkle in the show barn.

This was showtime. The 17-year-old 4-H and FFA exhibitor spent months working up to this one day.

There was the time spent selecting show calves from the family herd, then catching and taming those calves so they would walk obediently with a rope halter, like a dog on a leash. Once they’re used to a halter, the calves need to know how to stand square for the livestock judge to scrutinize their genetically derived attributes.

The purple and blue ribbons given to the county fair winners are nice rewards, but Lambrecht doesn’t just show animals at the fair to chase garlands. She also does it for the connection she feels both with her cows and also the other competitors.

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