UnderCover Waitress: Pink Slime

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pink Slime

Just when I think it can't get any worse, it does.

High fructose corn syrup fails to send an appropriate signal to the brain that you have eaten enough. This is why people eating more high fructose corn syrup eat more food, and this has been linked to obesity. The manufacturer's response to the problem was to change the name to "corn sugar" and launch a deceitful ad campaign claiming "it's all just sugar."

I like cheese. I have seen "pasteurized, processed cheese food" on the grocery store shelves. I don't know what that is.

My husband and son were having fun the other night looking up food ingredients in the dictionary. Personally, I was surprised they could find some of those "items" in a basic dictionary.

And now, we have "pink slime." If they really want us to eat it, you'd think they would have come up with a better name, no? Aye, there's the rub! Nobody is expecting adults to eat pink slime. Even McDonald's decided not to use the stuff as filler in their hamburgers. No, pink slime is slated for public school cafeterias.

So, you ask, what is pink slime, anyway?

According to the Huffington Post, pink slime is not meat. It is connective tissue, such as tendons that hold muscle onto bone, and cartiledge. Connective tissue does not have protein; actual meat has protein. Because of the lack of protein, pink slime is only used as filler. If you ate only pink slime, you would be undernourished. But filler is okay for growing children who need protein even more than adults.

The connective tissue that is slated to be used as filler in children's food has been treated with ammonia. This is to kill the E. Coli and other bacteria that the stuff is crawling with.

When I prepare meat at home, I always rinse it in ammonia before cooking. I've watched the chefs rinse filet mignon in big vats of ammonia before grilling medium rare and serving to customers. Yes, I am being sarcastic.

Actually, as a professional waitress, I have been known to assert my right to not serve something. This is a rare occurrence, because the chefs and cooks are professionals, as well. But mistakes happen, for example, a customer ordered his bacon well-done and the cook tried to serve it on the less-done side. It is a simple thing to remind the cook that the order was for "well-done" bacon; the point is that I reserve the right to refuse to serve. I wouldn't serve pink slime to my dog.

Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver of the Food Revolution has been prominent in the outcry against feeding children garbage, including pink slime. Since Chef Oliver's efforts, the Huffington Post article, and a subsequent Change.org petition hit the internet, there was enough outcry to cause some school districts to opt out of the pink slime deliveries.

CBS.com uploaded an article arguing that pink slime is nothing but ground beef, which is the exact opposite of what the thoroughly researched Huffington Post article claimed. Of course, CBS links to few sources and writes in a "pop" tone of voice. I leave all of you, my dear readers, to decide which article is more credible.

In the meantime, I'll have a salad. 


  1. Pink Slime sounds and is disgusting. Why is it so hard to get school cafeterias to serve decent food to our children. I suppose they can argue lack of funds. It's time the government starts making children and their education a priority instead of always cutting funding from the schools!

  2. Yup. I believe that societies pay for what they value. There is a bank in the area with a copper roof. I'll bet the bank managers and CEOs are not eating pink slime for lunch. Just a guess.

  3. I'll definitely go with the Huffington Post's version. The corporate media (with the occasional exception of MSNBC) is far too corporately biased.

    I love the copper roof comment. Hey they paid for that roof with 30 years of trickle-down "job creating" tax cuts don't ya know. lol

    It's true, we have changed our priorities in this country. Remember in the 80's under Reagan the dream changed from a simple house, white picket fence, 2 kids a dog and an annual family vacation, into...
    "Everyone can be a millionaire, just privatize everything, defund programs and put our entire economy on the stock market.

    1. I like the way you describe the Reagan era. I see in your comment the "American dream" changing from something reasonable into outrageous greed.

    2. Really? MSNBC isn't biased?? Seriously?? They ARE corporate owned. I don't see how that is even worth mentioning in your comment. And FYI....Huffington Post is chalked full of misinformation. We would all fair better by doing our own research.

    3. Anonymous, let me guess: you are either a life-long, extremely conservative Republican or even a member of the Tea Party. To you, any news that makes liberal values look worthy of consideration is simply the result of the "liberal biased media! the liberal biased media!"

      Do your own research is good advice, but where? Would you suggest Fox News for good, unbiased and objective coverage? I'll continue to read the Huffington Post, the New York Time, the Nation, and even the Wall Street Journal (WSJ is the most conservative of the list.) But, gee, thanks so much for the heads-up.

    4. That was in response to Angies comment. And yes, I am conservative. No, l am not a tea-bagger (although I do LOVE that term). I just found that comment ludicrous and not relevant to the topic. Why is it people feel the need to infuse politics into everything? I get it. People are passionate about politics. And food. But what does one have to do with the other? We have the right to consume whatever we want. That's about all I see as far as a common thread is concerned. Give it another term though. The current administration may just take that away.
      And my name is Shellice. Pleasure to make your acquaintance 'under cover'.

    5. Hi Shellice!

      Re: infusing politics into everything, I am most likely guilty of that. In this specific case, I think that politics does have a direct effect on what food is served at public school lunch. I will try to make an objective comment here, as I am bleeding heart and you are conservative: the two major political parties will approach funding the social service of school lunch in entirely different ways. And they will, most likely, produce entirely different results.

      Pink slime is cheap. Those most concerned with costs will be more likely to approve of serving pink slime. Media outlets that pander to the cost-conscious may be more likely to report that pink slime is "just meat."

      I agree that adults make choices as to what to put in their bodies, unless they are too poor to have much choice. Public school children are at the mercy of the choices that both their parents and the school administration makes.

      On another note, I give you five minutes to dig up my identity. ;-D

  4. I didn't know that about the signals that were being missed. Gonna curb my intake.


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