Beef Products Inc. today announced it will suspend operations at three of the four plants where lean finely textured beef (LFTB) is made -- dubbed "pink slime" by social media. As we reported in Pro Farmer Newsletter last week, this product is beef that is mechanically and safely removed from trimmings and added to other ground beef.
Link to the American Meat Institute's statement re: the situation.
But because of an uneducated crusade to rid the world of LFTB, McDonald's Wal-Mart, Kroger Co and Safeway announced last week they are removing the product from their shelves and there is a movement to remove the product from the school lunch program.
Craig Letch, Beef Products Inc. director of food safety and quality assurance said the company has suspended operations in Amarillo, Texas, Garden City, Kansas and Waterloo, Iowa. The company's plant at its Dakota Dunes, S.D., headquarters will continue operations. "We feel like when people can start to understand the truth and reality then our business will come back," he said. "It's 100 percent beef."
Juli says: The results from an uneducated crusade such as this against LFTB can be economic devastating. In this instance, about 200 employees at each of the three plants are affected by the suspension. As the "pink slime" movement was gaining momentum, we were canvassing social media outlets to get the message out about the truth of what LFTB really is. But we can't do this alone. On the the "Food Revolution Community" on Facebook, I engaged in several conversation with folks that didn't understand what the product was and were looking for more information. Do the same. Be civil and educate. You can make a difference!