Beef Products Inc., the company that manufactures beef product known as “Pink Slime,” announced that they would close three of their four manufacturing plants that make what they refer to as “Lean Beef Trimmings.” According to the Change.org petition that brought attention to the Pink Slime controversy, “’Pink slime’ is the term used for a mixture of beef scraps and connective tissue (formerly used only for pet food and rendering) that is treated with ammonia hydroxide to remove pathogens like salmonella and E coli.” After treating the mixture, it is blended into ground beef and hamburger patties.
To quote the company: “We are making significant progress in setting the record straight and are encouraged by recent market research which shows that consumers are very interested in consuming high quality, safe lean ground beef – which is exactly what we have done for the last thirty years. We continue to stand by our lean beef as 100% wholesome, safe and nutritious, and we will continue to defend Beef Products, Inc. against the mischaracterizations and irresponsible misrepresentations that led us to take these actions.”
This is a prime example of missing the point. If you have to process meat scraps with ammonia to make it “safe”, can we really call that real food? Do you think anyone would buy this if they put it out for sale at the grocery store? Of course not! Then why is it okay to use this in filler in our fast-food burgers?
And why do they have to treat “bits” of beef with ammonia anyway? It is because warehouse cattle are fed a diet consisting primarily of corn, which doesn’t agree with their systems and makes them vulnerable to diseases such as E Coli. Interestingly enough, beef that are fed grass, their natural food, can recover from disease. Of course, why not just feed them grass to begin with? Simple. Beef fed with grass are much more expensive to raise, while corn, which is heavily subsidized by the federal government, is much cheaper. If you’d like to have your eyes opened about the corn industry, see the documentary “King Corn”.
And my final question: What are beef “bits”? They are the part of the beef that are not recognizable as a cut of meat, but are rather, the beef “byproducts”. Why would anyone want to eat that?
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