Q: animal "produce"?

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Sun Nov 23 19:39:30 UTC 2008

On Nov 23, 2008, at 8:17 AM, Arnold Zwicky wrote:

> On Nov 23, 2008, at 6:40 AM, Doug Wilson wrote:
>> Nothing wrong with plain "animal produce", maybe. Plenty of examples
>> at
>> Google Books, although the phrase is less common than, e.g., "dairy
>> produce".
> it seems to be be used as a kind of technical term in the material i
> found.  the question is whether ordinary people would understand
> "animal produce" correctly.
> the problem is that "animal" is used to cover a large group of living
> things, but only in certain contexts, notably when used in contrast to
> "plant" (in ordinary language) and as a technical term in biology.  in
> this sense it takes in a large variety of creatures, including
> insects, spiders, sponges, corals, fish, molluscs, reptiles,
> amphibians, birds, and mammals.
> in ordinary usage, "animal" most often refers to mammals (excluding
> human beings); this sense is listed in NOAD2 ("as opposed to bird,
> reptile, fish, or insect").  as a result, "animal produce" would be
> understood as referring to produce from mammals, especially edible
> products, especially meat: beef, veal, lamb, pork.  and it would
> exclude poultry, fish, and shellfish.
> ordinary english doesn't have a term covering edible flesh in
> general.  instead, there is a folk taxonomy with three divisions:
> meat, poultry, and seafood (fish and shellfish).  traditionally, in
> the U.K., the three types of edible flesh were sold (and perhaps still
> are, in some places) in three different shops, by a butcher, a
> poulterer, and a fishmonger, respectively.  and the three types are
> now sold in different departments of supermarkets (and dairy products
> and eggs in still another).
> in any case, there is certainly a folk taxon taking in meat, poultry,
> and seafood -- we think of them as constituting some kind of class or
> category -- but, as with many higher-level taxa, we don't have an
> ordinary-language term for this category.

If I ran into "animal produce," the first meaning I would probably
think of is products such as honey, eggs and milk.

The word I use for AZ's sense of "animal produce" above is "red meat".

It sounds like what is wanted is something like "poultry (or fowl) and
red meats" to avoid dairy, sea products, gelatin, soup stock, honey
and other non-applicable items. BB

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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