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February 3, 2012 at 8:48 AMComments: 3 Faves: 0

"You want slime with that?" McDonald's finally ditches pink slime from their burgers

From the FitChatter Blog Series

Welcome back to FitChatter! This week in the news - McDonald's finally ditched ammonia-treated beef scraps from their burgers. Your opinion: was this practice frugal or disgusting?

What's in your burger?

Well, if you're eating at McDonald's, there's one thing that's definitely not in your burger anymore: pink slime.

Okay, that sounds gross - but what is it? Prepare yourself - this is going to get a bit nasty...

"Pink slime" - so dubbed by British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, who began crusading against the stuff in April - is what results from treating inedible scrap meat with ammonium hydroxide. By "inedible," I mean "the-parts-of-a-cow-that-are-most-likely-to-be-full-of-E.coli-and-salmonella-and-are-usually-fed-to-dogs-because-their-stomachs-can-handle-it." So you take that, and mix it with ammonia. You know, the main ingredient in many household cleaners, fertilizers, and homemade bombs.

So apparently, when you mix those two vile things together, you get something supposedly edible and USDA-classified as "generally recognized as safe."

Sorry, but just because it's "generally recognized as safe" doesn't mean I want to eat it.

If you've got the stomach for it, watch Oliver's interpretation of the process:

Until McDonald's stopped using this Frankenstein mixture, it was a cheap way for them to (forgive the pun) beef up their burgers. Oh, they didn't call it "pink slime," of course. No, naturally they preferred to refer to it as "select lean beef trimmings." (Ooh, "select!" Sounds downright gourmet!)

The company, of course, denies that Oliver had anything to do with their decision to ditch the slime. The hilariously named Todd Bacon, McDonald's senior supply chain officer, claims that their decision "was not related to any particular event, but rather to support our effort to align our global beef raw material standards." (But then again, they denied that Morgan Spurlock's documentary Super Size Me had anything to do with getting rid of the supersize option, so take that for what you will.)

Getting rid of it from McDonald's menu is a huge victory for Oliver (even if Mickey D's won't own up) and for the American public. But according to Oliver's estimations, this horrifying goo is still in a very large percentage of the beef in this country.

And that's enough to make me lose my appetite.

Okay, I think I've made my opinion pretty clear. But what do you think? Is pink slime a legitimate way for companies to save money, or should it be considered unfit for consumption? Would you want to eat it, or do you think the practice should be banned?

Sources: 1 | 2 | 3

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  • One word: GROSS. I cannot believe they put ammonia in the "pink slime." As if it's not gross enough and they go and make it even worse. :/

    Now that I know about pink slime, I wouldn't want to eat it. But the fact that you can get a McDouble for $1 and that could be your whole meal is still very appealing. It's sad when it comes down to money...but it sorta does. So, in that case, it depends on what you hold as important: saving money and spending it on something else or quality of food. Do you want to spend $5+ dollars on a organic, beef burger or $1 on one filled with pink slime? It seems like it'd be a pretty simple answer....but it can be hard.

  • Now that we know about the pink slim I don't think anyone would want to eat it. This was quite the eye opener! Where's the beef?

  • Oh my word! Who wants to pay money to eat pink slime?

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