There are charlatans that become celebrities (Food Babe, Dr. Oz), then there are celebrities that become charlatans. Case in point – Gwyneth Paltrow, Academy Award winning actress turned entrepreneur as the founder & chief creative officer of Goop.

Capitalizing on America’s obsession with celebrities and our apparent desire to throw money at useless products, Paltrow is now hawking health foods, outrageously expensive clothes and adult toys that you couldn’t buy with a trailer load of weaned calves. 

All of which is mostly harmless, until Paltrow begins giving consumers scientific advice as she did recently on Chelsea Handler’s talk show. Paltrow criticized Big Ag because “we don’t know if GMOs are beneficial or harmful,” and the government because it “could let us eat or buy things that we don’t know.”

Really? Such statements from the founder of Goop, which sells Spirit Dust? Yeah, Spirit Dust, a concoction for your smoothies that contains Goji, reishi, longan, astragalus, salvia and stevia – at about $30 per ounce. But no GMOs!

Well-traveled wolverine

This is the story of M-56, a wolverine in the news because he was shot and killed by a ranch hand who spotted the animal planning his next meal in the calving pasture of the Wisness Ranch in far western North Dakota.

Wildlife experts say it was the first sighting of a wolverine in North Dakota since 1870.

M-56, a young male, was captured in 2008 and implanted with a radio tracking device south of Yellowstone National Park. The tracking device last identified M-56 in Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park in 2012, some 500 miles from the spot where he was implanted. The Wisness Ranch where M-56 met his demise is nearly 700 miles from Rocky Mountain National Park. Wildlife experts consider wolverines vicious and with strength out of proportion to its size, wolverines are quite capable of taking down an adult cow.

JBS proposes reorganization

Under-performance of JBS SA’s beef business led to first quarter pre-tax earnings 22.5% lower than in 2015. Now, the Brazilian company has unveiled what analysts call a radical corporate restructuring that will create a New York-based unit to access cheaper capital.

The new unit, JBS Foods International, will hold the company’s non-Brazilian beef, chicken and processed-food businesses as well as its Brazilian chicken and processed-food unit Seara. JBS SA, the entity that currently trades in Sao Paulo, will in the future own just the Brazilian beef, leather and biodiesel businesses under the name of JBS Brasil, and will continue to be traded there. The proposed reorganization “is a natural next step in the continuing development of JBS as a global food company,” said Russ Colaco, head of strategy and corporate development at JBS

Beef bounces back

Beef and cattle prices bounced back sharply in the past ten days.  Choice boxed beef ended last week at $218.56/cwt, up $14.82 cwt from the recent low on May 6.  Wholesale prices were generally higher last week for end meats (round and chuck) as well as middle meats (rib and loin).  Five-market fed cattle prices ended the week of May 13 at $132.64/cwt, up $14.61/cwt from the May 4 low.  Auction prices for feeder cattle in Oklahoma were mostly up four to six percent in the past one to two weeks.