The U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved the pink goo pawned off as meat and will announce that starting this fall, schools will be able to choose whether or not they buy hamburger that contains the lean finely textured beef known as “pink slime."
According to ABC News, the announcement comes one week after it was reveled that the "pink slime," was found in 70 percent of the ground beef sold at supermarkets.
Kit Foshee, a former quality assurance manager at Beef Products Inc, the company that produces the “pink slime,” said:
"It kind of looks like play dough, it's pink and frozen, it's not what the typical person would consider meat."
Foshee said that he was fired by BPI after complaining about the process used to make the filler, and the company's claims about it. Since then, he has spoken out against the product.
J. Patrick Boyle, president of the American Meat Institute, defended the practice as a way to safely use what otherwise would be wasted.
"BLBT (Boneless Lean Beef Trimmings) is a sustainable product because it recovers lean meat that would otherwise be wasted," he said in a statement.
Critics say the slime is more like gelatin than meat, and before BPI found a way to use it by disinfecting the trimmings with ammonia, it was sold only to dog food or cooking oil suppliers.
The low-grade trimmings come from the parts of the cow most susceptible to contamination, often close to the hide, which is highly exposed to fecal matter.
But because the treatment of the trimmings - simmering them in low heat, separating fat and tissue using a centrifuge and spraying them with ammonia gas to kill germs - the United States Department of Agriculture says it's safe to eat.
So how do you know that the meat you are eating is real and not the pink stuff? If your meat is stamped USDA Organic, it's pure meat with no filler.
Otherwise, you can't know from the packaging because "pink slime" does not have to appear on the label. And the USDA is giving no indication it will force meat packers to lift the veil of secrecy any time soon.
But should they be feeding this substance to children?