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Pink Slimed
January 10, 2012 2:39 PM   Subscribe

In underreported news last month McDonald's, Burger King and Taco Bell have agreed to discontinue the use of ammoniated boneless lean beef trimmings, a/k/a Pink Slime, in their products.

Most of the world's pink slime comes from just one company, Iowa-based Beef Products Inc., which at one time boasted of having its product in 70% of hamburger meat sold in the U.S. McDonalds, Burger King and Taco Bell made up approximately 25% of BPI's business. BPI officials said they still have other fast-food chains as customers but would not identify them.

At least some of the credit for the shift in consumer preferences belongs to Jamie Oliver and his Food Revolution program, which didn't so much portray the product as unsafe as simply disgusting

Pink Slime previously.
posted by 2bucksplus (145 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite

 
Cargill Meat Solutions

Food should not be a mathematical equation. Unless it is pasta, in which case, set Taylor series equal to all-you-can-eat buffet and divide by pie.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:43 PM on January 10, 2012 [7 favorites]


Hamburgers, now with less Slime!
posted by The Whelk at 2:46 PM on January 10, 2012


I don't even eat at McDonalds, Burger King or Taco Bell and I think I just threw up in my soul a little bit just now.
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 2:47 PM on January 10, 2012 [16 favorites]


Oh.............good.
posted by tumid dahlia at 2:48 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


Cargill Meat Solutions

This has generated no less than 14 absolutely disgusting thoughts in my head of what Cargill is referring to as "Meat Solutions."
posted by Mister Fabulous at 2:48 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


If there's something strange
in your quarter pounder
Who ya gonna call?
JAMIE OLIVER
posted by Rodrigo Lamaitre at 2:48 PM on January 10, 2012 [7 favorites]


I can't tell if "ammoniated boneless lean beef trimmings" or "pink slime" sounds more disgusting.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 2:49 PM on January 10, 2012 [12 favorites]


Cargill Meat Solutions

A Modestly Slimy Proposal
posted by elizardbits at 2:50 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


My tapeworm is going to be so bummed out when I tell him.
posted by infinitywaltz at 2:50 PM on January 10, 2012 [12 favorites]


This is roughly on par with, "it's people."
posted by found missing at 2:51 PM on January 10, 2012


Read that as "Carville Meat Solutions." Cajun Style.
posted by dismas at 2:53 PM on January 10, 2012 [8 favorites]


This is a good thing. For values of good thing I still won't eat.
posted by Splunge at 2:56 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I thought this may be the case when I saw McDonald's new campaign on the tube this weekend. It was to the effect that McDonald's uses real food in its products.

Real beef!

Real Eggs!

Then after putting my head back on, I wondered what the status of the ammoniated pink slurry component of their burgers was. It's an unusual world when restaurants are advertising with no shame at all the their food is made of food.
posted by Keith Talent at 2:56 PM on January 10, 2012 [41 favorites]


I just bought a $22 meat grinder from Amazon, and it's great. I purchase fresh beef at about $3 to $5 a pound and grind it right before I prepare my hamburgers or meatloaf or whatever. It's nice to know the meat I'm grinding is fresh, and from one contiguous piece from a part of the cow that I recognize.

Why?

Because pink slime is why.

Now let's see the same thing for chicken, fast food giants!
posted by jabberjaw at 2:59 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I... I think I just turned vegetarian.
posted by Space Kitty at 2:59 PM on January 10, 2012 [10 favorites]


Here in Chicago, Sara Lee just split into two corporations and is locating its meat operations (now named "MeatCo") to central Chicago to better develop a "creative and innovative culture." I enjoy trying to imagine what that means in meat products.
posted by cgk at 2:59 PM on January 10, 2012 [8 favorites]


MeatFilter. Literally.
posted by resurrexit at 3:00 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


FOOD TO CONTAIN INCREMENTALLY MORE FOOD

It's morning in America.
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 3:00 PM on January 10, 2012 [64 favorites]


Being creative in the modern meat industry would be actually using meat.
posted by The Whelk at 3:00 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


So how long before the non-slimed meat shows up in the fastfood chain, and I wonder if it'll make a difference in the way the food tastes. It's gotta at least have some effect on the mouthfeel.
posted by crunchland at 3:01 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Still no word on plans to reduce dependency on Animal 57, however.
posted by cortex at 3:01 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Things do not bode well for the McAspic.
posted by griphus at 3:01 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oliver's TV segment didn't so much portray the product as unsafe as simply disgusting.

"To me, as a chef and food lover, this is shocking," he said.


Well, that's a little different, isn't it? De gustibus non est disputandum and all that. Plenty of people think McDonald's is disgusting. Given how many hot dogs I've probably eaten in my life, I'd likely think the component parts are disgusting, too.

Tell me what's unsafe. You can leave my taste preferences to me.
posted by Capt. Renault at 3:02 PM on January 10, 2012 [22 favorites]


This was actually an outtake from that feisty Iowa Pride video that was making the rounds last week.

"You know that filling pink slime in your value burger? We're the reason it's there!" *thumps chest*
posted by roger ackroyd at 3:03 PM on January 10, 2012


In underreported news last month McDonald's, Burger King and Taco Bell have agreed to discontinue the use of ammoniated boneless lean beef trimmings, a/k/a Pink Slime, in their products.

So they aren't going to ammoniate it before use anymore?
posted by furiousxgeorge at 3:06 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is why I grind my own beef (or have my brother-in-law butcher do it for me). This is also why we're trying to eat less and less meat in general.
posted by Doleful Creature at 3:06 PM on January 10, 2012


“It’s just a shame that an activist with an agenda can really degrade the safety of our food supply,” said David Theno, an industry consultant who has advised BPI and is credited with turning the Jack in the Box burger chain into a model of food safety after a deadly E. coli outbreak in 1993. He called the BPI process “extraordinarily effective” in making beef safer.

You know what else is safer?

Not letting the shit get into the meat.

Oh, but it will cost more!

How much more? Fifty cents per burger? A dollar a burger? That sounds like a goddamn bargain to me.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 3:09 PM on January 10, 2012 [33 favorites]


It tastes like...despair.
posted by Thorzdad at 3:10 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Oh Animal 57, thy time is come at last.
posted by bonehead at 3:11 PM on January 10, 2012


For those of you grinding your own meat, you might be interested in this entry on Serious Eats Hamburger Today blog from a few years ago, where they claim to have come up with the best, most flavorful mixture of beef cuts for the optimal burger.
posted by crunchland at 3:12 PM on January 10, 2012 [10 favorites]


I just bought a $22 meat grinder from Amazon

So, here in Rhode Island, "grinder" (phonetically: grindah) is slang similar to "hero" or "sub" or "hoagie", which made this statement very confusing to me for a minute there. I mean, I'm no pink slime fan but I'm not about to pay twenty-two dollars for a sandwich that's still going to need to be shipped to me by UPS (free shipping or no free shipping!) just so that I'll know it isn't pink slime. I also wasn't exactly sure when Amazon had gotten into selling food, but for whatever reason that part didn't surprise me in the least.

But yes, buying a tool with which you grind up your meat yourself (meat which does not come from Amazon), yes that makes a lot of sense.
posted by mstokes650 at 3:13 PM on January 10, 2012 [13 favorites]


When it comes to American meat products, it's all sausage, and you really don't want to know the details.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:14 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Not using pink slime in fast food is akin to not calling you smelly when you are being water boarded.

The pink slime is not the problem. It's the widespread blasé acceptance - or wilful ignorance of - the practices of the industrial animal farming industry.

And you'd bury that news, because it acknowledges the vileness that people have already been consuming. GREAT NEWS EVERYBODY! WE NO LONGER USE FÆCES IN OUR FOOD! You knew we used fæces in our food right? WE STOPPED THAT! US! No need to thank us. CHECK OUT THE DOLLAR MENU!
posted by davemee at 3:14 PM on January 10, 2012 [18 favorites]


Tell me what's unsafe. You can leave my taste preferences to me.

Exactly. People are trying to lessen waste, make food safer and allow more people to have a reliable source of beef protein and the most of this thread consists of ick snark and hipsters. For some people who want a burger that extra fifty cents or a dollar on a burger does matter. You already have plenty of hipster places ready to charge you $9.50 for a burger so go eat there instead of McDs or BK. Problem solved.

Some people eat mouldy cheese, mouldy milk, mouldy bread, bread made from and with mould or other disgusting things and additives. So how about you all just get down from your pedestals and live with the fact that some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out.

Hell, I've eaten enough meat pies in my life to catch the odd artery or two so I know what goes into it is part offal. With gravy, bacon and cheese it's still delicious.
posted by Talez at 3:15 PM on January 10, 2012 [33 favorites]


pink slime can only be a step or two away from soylent green
posted by HuronBob at 3:15 PM on January 10, 2012


Is there a polysyllabic German word for the feeling you get when hearing about the solution to a horrifying problem of which you were previously unaware?
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 3:16 PM on January 10, 2012 [21 favorites]


... most of this thread consists of ick snark and hipsters ...

The preferred industry term is "Blue Slime," thanks.
posted by mph at 3:19 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


live with the fact that some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out

I'm afraid it is you who will have to live with the fact that enough people do. Ain't capitalism a bitch?
posted by howfar at 3:19 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


So how about you all just get down from your pedestals and live with the fact that some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out.

More power to them.

But it's about labeling, not content. As always, it's about choice. I've eaten pink slime. Everyone has. I'm sure it's (relatively) safe.

But it sure would be nice to know about it ahead of time so I can avoid if I wanted.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 3:20 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


I hope no one ever reveals what is in the Filet-o-fish. I like to hope that it is something along the lines of fish.
posted by Hicksu at 3:25 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


You and your facts will not get in the way of me enjoying Big Macs.

Hey, that sorta rhymes.
posted by Fister Roboto at 3:26 PM on January 10, 2012


I bet I know how this will play out. It happened when Coke changed their recipe awhile back. Consumers will complain that their burgers don't taste like they used to, and so McDonalds will start selling the "Classic" Quarter Pounder, as well as the "New" Quarter Pounder.
posted by crunchland at 3:27 PM on January 10, 2012


Would now be a good time to let you know that every last one of you has handled my ass pennies?
posted by indubitable at 3:28 PM on January 10, 2012 [28 favorites]


This is making me so hungry. I might duck out to Macca's and grab a Big Mac.
posted by markr at 3:29 PM on January 10, 2012


Huh. I had heard of pink slime, but for some reason I had thought it was only in McNuggets, not beef.

Anyway, the slime has probably reached Canada, even if some of the fast food places will now eschew it. I was ready to stop buying supermarket ground beef anyway -- there's just no taste to it -- but this is ... informative.
posted by maudlin at 3:29 PM on January 10, 2012


Super slime me.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:29 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I've known about this for ages and I still eat it sometimes. While a prime cut of meat will always taste better (a thousand times better), this really won't hurt you and it makes the meat safe, not to mention it makes some meat more affordable to people who can't always afford a nice cut. If you don't like it, don't eat it.

I'm all for labeling it. People should have a choice.
posted by Malice at 3:31 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


I hope no one ever reveals what is in the Filet-o-fish. I like to hope that it is something along the lines of fish.

What's in it? The decimation of not one but two species of fish. So you're perfectly safe from the ick factor if that's what you're really worried about here.
posted by Talez at 3:33 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


I always assumed there were far more disgusting things than that involved in the production of hamburgers.
posted by spilon at 3:33 PM on January 10, 2012


McDonald's, Burger King and Taco Bell have agreed to discontinue the use of ammoniated boneless lean beef trimmings, a/k/a Pink Slime, in their products.

FROM NOW ON, WE LEAVE THE BONES IN
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:37 PM on January 10, 2012 [7 favorites]


Some people are going to be pissed about that.
posted by Talez at 3:41 PM on January 10, 2012


Hm. I'm not sure how I feel about this.

On one hand, pink slime sounds disgusting. On the other, more cows are going to need to die in order to produce the same quantity of usable food (along with all of the surprising amount of nasty pollution generated by raising, slaughtering, and disposing of a cow).

I guess my personal position of finding Fast Food hamburgers to be nasty-tasting, and not even a particularly good value allows me to sidestep the issue entirely.
posted by schmod at 3:44 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I wonder if they'll start using gelatin

meat jell-o sounds amazing
posted by LogicalDash at 3:46 PM on January 10, 2012


Now where am I going to get my daily fix of pink slime. I can't affort to switch exclusively to Pate. I guess liverwurst ?

meat jell-o sounds amazing

You mean aspic?
posted by Ad hominem at 3:48 PM on January 10, 2012


Surely meat jell-o is just plain jell-o?

Mm. Wobbly and flavourless.
posted by howfar at 3:48 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Sounds like a beef version of lutefisk. Which is pretty nasty, yet traditional.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 3:50 PM on January 10, 2012


So how about you all just get down from your pedestals and live with the fact that some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out.

Yeah, sheeple. If eating pink slime was really bad for you, Ron Paul fans would be telling us to Google it at every available opportunity.

Pink slime is good for you, pink slime is good for America. Don't Google pink slime. Just keep on shoveling it down your pie holes.

This message has been approved by Friends of Ron Paul and the Pink Slime Producers of America.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:51 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


This "ewww grosss" stuff cracks me up.. In some cultures foods cured with ammonia are a delicacy.

But then again, it was here on metafilter I read "if it had more than four ingredients it isn't real food" as if to discount most of cookery throughout history.
posted by Ad hominem at 3:54 PM on January 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


Now where am I going to get my daily fix of pink slime.

Can I interest you in this secondhand Slushee machine?
posted by tumid dahlia at 3:55 PM on January 10, 2012


I hope no one ever reveals what is in the Filet-o-fish. I like to hope that it is something along the lines of fish.

Well, it IS a fish.

It's just that they caught it in 1962 and have been doling out pieces of it ever since.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:00 PM on January 10, 2012 [7 favorites]


"This message has been approved by Friends of Ron Paul and the Pink Slime Producers of America."

Again, the issue isn't that pink slime is bad for anyone—to the degree to which it's produced properly (as should all the beef) it's actually safer than the other meat.

Rather, the issue is two-fold. First, people don't like the idea of it, whether or not it's safe and just beef (which is all it is). Second, whether it's rational or not, a substantial part of what icks people out is the ammonia treatment, which wouldn't be necessary if the factory farming of beef wasn't so horribly disgustingly bacteria-ridden. To the degree to which this solves the food safety caused by that problem—which is the basis upon which it's defended in these links—then that's the degree to which the beef industry can get away with continuing to be so filthy.

However, let's say they solve that problem and beef is produced in the way we wish that it were. There's still going to be a fair amount of unused meat that is separated from the fat from trimmings that will be too small to be used normally. Even if it weren't contaminated, say, and therefore not treated with ammonia, it would still look like a "pink slime" when it's produced. So should that food be discarded? Because it seems disgusting in its raw state? Is it necessarily a bad thing because it's the product of an industrial process?

Sure, people ought to be able to choose. We should be told what's in our food. And people should then be free to make irrational decisions based upon instinctive reactions. Just like people should be free to vote Republican or watch prime-time sitcoms or whatever else stupid stuff people do.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:06 PM on January 10, 2012 [8 favorites]


I wonder if they'll start using gelatin

Hey, leave me out of it.
posted by Gelatin at 4:10 PM on January 10, 2012 [14 favorites]


But I fucking love quarter pounders.

:(
posted by the young rope-rider at 4:11 PM on January 10, 2012


I don't get it. What's the BFD. The cow's meat if efficiently harvested with the maximum amount of edible protien removed. It is sanitized and transformed into a delicious burger. Some bits of partially digested cattle feed and dead bacteria gross you out? What do you think fertilizes organic farms. You can wash a potato all day, but it was grown in a shit pile.
posted by humanfont at 4:13 PM on January 10, 2012 [4 favorites]


HUMANFONT ARE YOU SUGGESTING THAT DIRT IS NOTHING MORE THAN WORM POOP
posted by DoctorFedora at 4:16 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


humanfront dont tell them about mushrooms or haggis
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 4:16 PM on January 10, 2012


Sorry, humanfront, but that's bullshit.

1) Literally
2) That burger is not delicious
3) Organic farms are fertilized by very health-conscious elves
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:19 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


Oh god. The only segment of How It's Made that I ever disliked was the one on haggis. That is something that you seriously do not want to see made. There's just something about lungs.
posted by wierdo at 4:19 PM on January 10, 2012


In related news...
posted by T.D. Strange at 4:20 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


> In some cultures foods cured with ammonia are a delicacy.

I have had century egg, and I remain unconvinced that those things — along with many other national "delicacies" — are anything other than elaborate pranks played on other cultures.
posted by lucidium at 4:20 PM on January 10, 2012 [4 favorites]


It's Raining Florence Henderson: 3) Organic farms are fertilized by very health-conscious elves

I know, they're awesome. You only need to grind up a couple to fertilize an entire farm.
posted by Talanvor at 4:22 PM on January 10, 2012 [13 favorites]


Next up: trendy dining spots listing "pink slime" on the menu.
posted by telstar at 4:23 PM on January 10, 2012


Hey - how come this burger smells like Lembas bread?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:24 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm all for maximizing the usage of animal product. Eventually, I just want meat grown in a lab as I'm okay with eating something that never had a brain.

I am also, however, in favor of these products being safe in the first place. I am not sure what can be done to the beef trimmings to eliminate bacteria without ammonia, but even so I expect the resulting trimming would still be some sort of disgusting looking meat product.. and I'm okay with that.

This sounds like Jamie Oliver being something like the Temperance movement one hundred years ago: addressing a downstream result rather than the underlying issue.
posted by linux at 4:26 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Is there a polysyllabic German word for the feeling you get when hearing about the solution to a horrifying problem of which you were previously unaware?

I think the term is "Schnitzelnfreude".


I could be wrong, though. Only one semester of college German under my belt, but I have been plastered on both Goldschläger and Jägermeister, so I feel like I've earned my teutonic bona fides.
posted by darkstar at 4:31 PM on January 10, 2012 [4 favorites]


This sounds like Jamie Oliver being something like the Temperance movement one hundred years ago: addressing a downstream result rather than the underlying issue.

I disagree. It's not him going "drugs are bad, mm-kay?" and he specifically says he enjoys the occasional hamburger, and praises the butcher on the show for presenting a good product as opposed to the pink slime.

If you watch the linked video, the end result is him telling the parents that, according to the FDA, this is all totally OK. Presumably, the intent is to galvanize opinion about the underlying issue -- required labeling, and understanding exactly what you're doing as a consumer so you can vote with your wallet, so to speak.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:35 PM on January 10, 2012


Coming soon: Pink Slurm and Torgo's Executive powder, now with more pink!
posted by hot_monster at 4:40 PM on January 10, 2012


Worse than "slime" to my ears, is hearing it called a "slurry."

And doesn't it include centrifugally extracted and blended bits of spinal column, connective tissue, etc. ? So it's not just an unsavory presentation of meat, it's meat plus other stuff not normally considered meat.
posted by StickyCarpet at 4:40 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


wierdo: "Oh god. The only segment of How It's Made that I ever disliked was the one on haggis. That is something that you seriously do not want to see made. There's just something about lungs."

That one didn't bother me. The one on hatchery chicks, OTOH, freaked me out.
posted by Splunge at 4:41 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Fact: a cow has to say "I don't know" 371 times in order to produce one liter of meat slime.
posted by dr_dank at 4:46 PM on January 10, 2012 [9 favorites]


Ummmm, yeah?!?!
posted by Windopaene at 4:46 PM on January 10, 2012


I'm saying your favorite organic root vegetable grew its whole life smothered in cow shit. After its life long shit bath; you rinse it off and crunch it raw. Maybe you have some cheese with it. Nothing says flavor like the carefully rotted extract from the mammary gland of a ruminant.
posted by humanfont at 4:47 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Will they be switching to cat? Oh, oh I hope so.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:49 PM on January 10, 2012


It isn't all bullshit, mostly it comes from cows and steers.
posted by humanfont at 4:51 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Again, the issue isn't that pink slime is bad for anyone—to the degree to which it's produced properly (as should all the beef) it's actually safer than the other meat.

Rather, the issue is two-fold. First, people don't like the idea of it, whether or not it's safe and just beef (which is all it is).
Pretty much all food is gross if you think about it enough.
posted by delmoi at 5:00 PM on January 10, 2012


Pretty much EVERYTHING is gross if you think about it enough.
posted by chronkite at 5:02 PM on January 10, 2012


I don't know that Oliver's show had that much of an effect on people being aware of disgusted by this stuff. I would say the fact that the story about it and pictures of it that got posted to every web site again and again and again reached far more people
posted by 2manyusernames at 5:05 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


*Thinks about The Whelk*
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:05 PM on January 10, 2012


White Castle has remained silent. God bless them
posted by jonmc at 5:09 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


If you watch the linked video, the end result is him telling the parents that, according to the FDA, this is all totally OK. Presumably, the intent is to galvanize opinion about the underlying issue

I'm all for proper labeling and including nutritional data and the last few decades show a good trend in that direction.

But the thing is, this product is okay to be FDA approved as it is 1) edible and 2) safe. The opinion being galvanized is not so much transparency but that finding out that an overcrowded world needs to maximize food production through GMO and chemical washes, and a lot of it is disgusting.

The backlash of public opinion could prove damaging, much like what happened with the Temperance movement.

Now if public opinion were even-tempered and the result was a call for improving the use of beef trimmings such that they do not need an ammonia wash, great. But it probably will still look disgusting (if not the same), and if we stop using it simply because of that, that just sounds like using the wallets of the public to push a moral agenda to no real result.
posted by linux at 5:09 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Pretty much all food is gross if you think about it enough.

Exactly. This made me think of Haggis. I bought all-fresh, all-natural lamb organs (heart, liver, lungs,) ground them, and boiled them. And it was the worst thing I've ever smelled in my life. My friend tried a little bit, and spent the next 30 minutes trying to powerwash his tongue. But after spicing it, mixing it with fat, and boiling it yet again, it was actually pretty damn tasty.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, pink slime is pretty disgusting. So is the chicken equivalent. But so are a lot of animal products. If certain hamburger chains can make otherwise binnable pieces of meat fit for human consumption and perhaps even tasty, I really don't have an ethical or gustatory problem with it.
posted by Vhanudux at 5:10 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


I remain unconvinced that those things — along with many other national "delicacies" — are anything other than elaborate pranks played on other cultures.

Hence the McDonalds in China.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 5:14 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


As long as I can still get free range puppy.
posted by cjorgensen at 5:18 PM on January 10, 2012


I reading a few additions to the Monster Manual here.
posted by SPrintF at 5:21 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


...some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out.

Hell, I've eaten enough meat pies in my life to catch the odd artery or two so I know what goes into it is part offal. With gravy, bacon and cheese it's still delicious.


You're coming off as startlingly ignorant of exactly how shitty meat production is in the U.S.
posted by odinsdream at 5:39 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


You really think its worse than a meat pie??
posted by smackfu at 5:41 PM on January 10, 2012


Catch cicadas, grasshoppers or crickets, pick the legs off, while they are wiggling a bit cover them in some flour or cornmeal, toss in the deep fryer until browned. Salt to taste. Serve dipped in ketchup or curry. I assure you these are quite tasty, don't think bug think mini-lobster.
posted by humanfont at 5:47 PM on January 10, 2012


Really, what animal isn't quite tasty if you pull their limbs off, deep fry them when they're still wriggling, and dip them in curry sauce?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:49 PM on January 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


Save the limbs for soup stock.
posted by found missing at 5:51 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


It’s just a shame that an activist with an agenda can really degrade the safety of our food supply,” said David Theno, an industry consultant who has advised BPI and is credited with turning the Jack in the Box burger chain into a model of food safety after a deadly E. coli outbreak in 1993. He called the BPI process “extraordinarily effective” in making beef safer.

Jebus. What a load of bollocks. Effective in making [our inedible, faecal contamined beef cut-offs] safe for consumption, maybe. Bringing attention to the fact that the stuff people are eating is not actually food is not degrading the food supply, it's improving it.

I mean, caveat emptor and all, but the point the most of most regulators is to protect people who are incapable of protecting themselves. The FDA seems to do that less and less.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:53 PM on January 10, 2012


But it isn't inedible. It's perfectly edible.

Can someone point me to information that demonstrates that it is bad, health-wise? Vs. just completely disgusting?
posted by the young rope-rider at 5:56 PM on January 10, 2012


What are we talking about again?
posted by found missing at 6:02 PM on January 10, 2012


Really, what animal isn't quite tasty if you pull their limbs off, deep fry them when they're still wriggling, and dip them in curry sauce?

Kitten.
posted by humanfont at 6:05 PM on January 10, 2012


Yeah - I suppose they should be dipped in catsup.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:16 PM on January 10, 2012 [10 favorites]


Pollan portrayed the ammonia treatment as typical of “high-tech fixes” that agribusiness giants use to ameliorate the public health problems that the filmmakers contended are created by industrial-scale agriculture.

Pretty much this. But by going after "pink slime" Oliver implicitly endorses the rest of a pathological and unsustainable food production system. I'm not the biggest fan of Pollan either but at least his work is grounded in real issues with food, not aesthetic concerns about icky meat slime. Now McDonalds gets to sell more burgers, agribusiness gets to sell more cattle (and therefore corn), and Jamie Oliver gets to act even more smug than usual.

Oh well, I suppose it raises awareness at the very least.
posted by mek at 6:21 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I was eating a McDonald's cheeseburger in the fall of 2010 on my home from hangin' out in town. Suddenly, I remembered those lawsuits by people that had found animals parts in their Mickey D's, such as mouse bones or roach parts. My imagination filled in what it would feel like to rub my tongue and teeth against old, dehydrated rodent fur, perhaps discovering the creature upon biting down on tiny brittle bones.

And that's when I pulled over and threw everything up.
Haven't had McDonald's, or Burger King, since. *Shudder*
posted by DisreputableDog at 6:46 PM on January 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


live with the fact that some people really don't care about whether a burger is made with a beef protein binder to stretch things out...

There are plenty of people out there that DON'T KNOW about this stuff. It's not like mega foodcorp advertises or educates kids in school about all the slime and meat glue, now is it?

And there's plenty of people who'd rather eat real food, but settle for shit because they can't afford better.

We can only hope when mega foodcorp markets soylent green, it won't be (quite) as adulterated.
posted by BlueHorse at 6:48 PM on January 10, 2012


Frankly, it's interesting that McDonald's hamburgers still have hamburger in them anymore. It's surprising that they haven't already made the switch to TVP yet. I'm pretty sure most of anything you order from Taco Bell probably is. Just like those little meat-like bits in canned spaghetti.
posted by crunchland at 6:50 PM on January 10, 2012


"I'll eat a pig's ass if you cook it right." (Chris Rock)
posted by 4ster at 7:01 PM on January 10, 2012


This brings up a question ... setting aside concerns about food allergies, is it unethical to surreptitiously replace one food for another in a recipe, assuming the replacement was as good as the original? For example, goat meat is a lot cheaper than lamb meat is. If I were to serve you lamb stew, but it was actually goat stew. Other examples include replacing chicken with rabbit, or skate for scallops. What do you think?
posted by crunchland at 7:08 PM on January 10, 2012


I remain unconvinced that those things — along with many other national "delicacies" — are anything other than elaborate pranks played on other cultures.

There is a reason IMO that national delicacies are shit food. All humans and all cultures like the same food: We like things that are fresh and which have a lot of calories. Mmm, yummy. This is Good Food, and it is universal, and because it's universal, it's not national. But throughout history, Good Food has often been unavailable, or seasonal, and people have been reduced to eating various forms of Shit Food just to get though lean times. Unlike Good Food, Shit Food is not universal, it is highly regional: If you can't get Good Food because it's too cold, you need to find a Shit Food that is available in the cold. If you can't get Good Food because it's too hot and humid, (or too dry, or the Robber Baron keeps stealing your cattle, or you have too little farmland, or you're nomadic, or whatever) the Shit Food solution will be defined by that problem instead.

In desperate attempts to make Shit Food more palatable, since it had to be eaten and stomached regardless, various preparation techniques evolve, hopefully until it is kind of sort of palatable, and by this time, it is highly distinctive highly regional fare. By contrast, Good Food can be prepared any old way and it's still going to be good.

"National delicacies" are usually just Shit Food in disguise. :)
posted by -harlequin- at 7:10 PM on January 10, 2012 [16 favorites]


ammoniated boneless lean beef trimmings

I'll bet the only thing that's changed is one of those five words.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:18 PM on January 10, 2012


Then again, maybe it's all five: Unammoniated bony, fatty horse (whole)
posted by Sys Rq at 7:29 PM on January 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


I won't eat a lot of things that other people consider delicacies. Why? Because that's a buzz word for what we ate when nothing else was around. Fried tarantulas, locusts and the rest are fine. If you are used to eating them. Personally I ate a lot of McDonalds when I was younger. I also ate that meat on a stick stuff that used to be around in the 1960s/1970s before there was any kind of food guidelines for street vendors. And I spent a lot of time sick because of it. Sure Anthony Bourdain can talk about street food anywhere being real food. But he can afford to be sick for a few days. I couldn't, cause I had a job that didn't accept gastrointestinal issues as an excuse.

I also remember a big issue about supermarkets washing poultry with chlorinated water to get rid of the smell and remarking them as fresh.

And of course as a kid I read that thing about dead rats in the sausages at that particular plant.

I'll eat rat sausage, but not with the rat shit and the dead rats accidentally falling in the mixer.

I have a certain limit for unusual food. And my big limit is the part when you put something in my food but don't tell me.

So if I'm a "hipster" right now, so be it. When I eat a $10 or $15 burger, I not only know what's in it, I know the chef and we discuss where he gets his meat from.

People that can only afford the fucking dollar menu deserve the same thing. What's in the nuggets that I'm feeding my three year old? What are my options?
posted by Splunge at 7:31 PM on January 10, 2012


I suppose they should be dipped in catsup.

Ketchup. Unless you live a cartoon from the 1940's there is no such thing as catsup.
posted by jonmc at 7:35 PM on January 10, 2012


Ketchup. Unless you live a cartoon from the 1940's there is no such thing as catsup.

I think there is if you're putting it on kittens.

I guess we could just ask an expert?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:41 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


You have to raise them right.
posted by Splunge at 7:59 PM on January 10, 2012


Metafilter: Pretty much EVERYTHING is gross if you think about it enough.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 8:10 PM on January 10, 2012


justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow: "Is there a polysyllabic German word for the feeling you get when hearing about the solution to a horrifying problem of which you were previously unaware?"

dasgrauendesnichtwissens, bitte sehr.
posted by arcticseal at 8:17 PM on January 10, 2012


Danke.
posted by Splunge at 8:41 PM on January 10, 2012


It's unclear to me if, when I buy organic or "natural" ground beef from local vendors, I would still be at risk of buying pink slime. I'm thinking it's still okay, but I'm not sure.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 11:24 PM on January 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Raw ground beef does not contain this stuff, it's only in preformed industrial hamburger patty products and other "value-added" items where it can be concealed via fillers, emulsifiers, flavourings, etc.
posted by mek at 11:30 PM on January 10, 2012


actually the NYT article suggests that it is in a lot of ground beef supplied to supermarkets as well:

The main issue is that they don't have to tell anyone that this ground beef contains ammonia treated off-cuts that may have had high levels of bacteria populations (before treatment).

"Carl S. Custer, a former U.S.D.A. microbiologist, said he and other scientists were concerned that the department had approved the treated beef for sale without obtaining independent validation of the potential safety risk. Another department microbiologist, Gerald Zirnstein, called the processed beef "pink slime" in a 2002 e-mail message to colleagues and said, “I do not consider the stuff to be ground beef, and I consider allowing it in ground beef to be a form of fraudulent labeling.”"

posted by mary8nne at 2:52 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


[Ammoniacal laughter is heard coming from off-stage]
posted by Glomar response at 3:45 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


If the concern is maximizing food production, then the answer is to eat less beef in the first place. The poor eat a lot of fast food meat in America. American culture is so obsessed with meat that it's the #1 shoplifted item in grocery stores.

Cheap beef isn't doing the poor any favors with regards to long term health and vegetable protein is crazy cheap to produce. The simple foods movement is changing the American culture of food and that is a good thing because the typical American diet is so awful for environment, body and soul, any added mindfulness will improve it. These so-called "hipster" ideas pioneer a space so other cultures can find solutions as well. For instance, you can use food stamps at Farmers Markets now.
posted by Skwirl at 6:14 AM on January 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


American culture is so obsessed with meat that it's the #1 shoplifted item in grocery stores.

Have you ever tried to slip a box of cereal down your pants?
posted by smackfu at 6:20 AM on January 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


Related and relevant.
posted by tr33hggr at 7:14 AM on January 11, 2012



"I want to clear up a misconception about the whatchaMcCarcus sandwich. I use NON-diseased meat from diseased animals."

Really? 127 comments and this hasn't come up yet?
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:17 AM on January 11, 2012


Frankly, it's interesting that McDonald's hamburgers still have hamburger in them anymore. It's surprising that they haven't already made the switch to TVP yet. I'm pretty sure most of anything you order from Taco Bell probably is. Just like those little meat-like bits in canned spaghetti.

Taco Bell, from what I understand, doesn't use TVP, but does use oats as a key filler. Their "taco meat filling" is 36% beef (of some source), with a significant remainder being water and "seasoning". The bulk of the seasoning seems to be oat isolates.

Which, I must say, when I learned, was quite a relief, since I'm periodically addicted to their damn tacos. I'd much rather be eating mostly beef-flavored oats. Now if they could address the other 36% that's beef and get that to be non-disgusting, we'd actually have something. Just as long as it tastes better than the pathetic Boca Burgers and their ilk (sorry vegetarians, but I really have tried).
posted by darkstar at 8:24 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thinking about the comment above regarding the home meat grinder, I'm seriously considering buying some nice meat and a package of TVP and making my own darn ground "beef" patties for freezing by mixing the two. What percentage would be needed to make it hamburger-esque -- would 20% meat and 80% TVP be sufficient? I suppose I could just make meatloaf...
posted by darkstar at 8:27 AM on January 11, 2012


Ad hominem: "You mean aspic?"

Previously on AskMetafilter....
posted by schmod at 8:57 AM on January 11, 2012


American culture is so obsessed with meat that it's the #1 shoplifted item in grocery stores.

I blame John Waters and Divine.
posted by malocchio at 9:00 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


American culture is so obsessed with meat that it's the #1 shoplifted item in grocery stores. --- I would have guessed it was razor blades.
posted by crunchland at 9:23 AM on January 11, 2012


They keep the razor blades locked up now so you have to get someone to get them for you.
posted by griphus at 9:26 AM on January 11, 2012


I would have guessed OTC drugs. A $30 bottle of something slips right in your pocket.
posted by smackfu at 9:40 AM on January 11, 2012


acid reflux meds, condoms, pee sticks--all locked up. In poorer areas, so is baby formula, which is super fucking depressing.
posted by the young rope-rider at 9:48 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've commented on grocery store meat thieves before, it's a special kind of pain in the ass.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 10:58 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Do they really expect us to swallow this tripe?
posted by porn in the woods at 11:51 AM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thinking about the comment above regarding the home meat grinder, I'm seriously considering buying some nice meat and a package of TVP and making my own darn ground "beef" patties for freezing by mixing the two. What percentage would be needed to make it hamburger-esque -- would 20% meat and 80% TVP be sufficient? I suppose I could just make meatloaf...

Are you joking? This is a joke, right? Why would you do this yourself?
posted by Malice at 4:07 PM on January 11, 2012


/hamburger?


am I doing this right?
posted by darkstar at 6:27 PM on January 11, 2012


Are you joking? This is a joke, right? Why would you do this yourself?

Because TVP is cheaper and more healthy than meat and you can't really tell the difference if you don't sub in too much of it?

80% is probably a bit too much though, "High quality TVP can be mixed with ground meat to a ratio of up to 1:3 (rehydrated TVP to meat) without reducing the quality of the final product, sometimes improving it if the meat used is poor."
posted by furiousxgeorge at 8:29 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Cool, thanks! Yeah, mainly for the health reasons, plus I've been steadily diminishing my meatly footprint on the planet and this seems a good way to take another step in that direction without having to sacrifice taste or texture, at least for the occasional burger.
posted by darkstar at 9:56 PM on January 11, 2012


I was vegan for a long time, and I personally had ill effects from consuming TVP regularly. It gave me heartburn and the smell after a while started to make me gag. There's no way I would ever mix it in with meat. It'd make more sense to mix red meat and ground turkey or something, closer in flavor and texture and you don't have to worry about the added carbs of TVP, which can be quite high carb. If you're having a burger with bread with that ground up meat, again, skip the TVP and use all meat if you're going for health. More protein and less bread is always better.

Another good way to reduce your 'meat footprint' (if you're just talking about the factory farming industry) is to get in touch with someone who hunts regularly. There are lots of hunters who do it for sport and just give the meat away to anyone who needs food.
posted by Malice at 12:44 AM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks, Malice!

(Name = ironysterical!)
posted by darkstar at 5:51 PM on January 23, 2012


(Name = ironysterical!)
posted by darkstar at 5:51 P


The name comes originally from a weird cg movie I watched several years ago. I then used it as my online gaming handle, so naturally I chose it here.

Now I regret it because anytime I disagree with someone they point at my name as if it means anything about my character. :(
posted by Malice at 11:54 PM on January 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


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