Yes, pink slime is gross. No one wants to think about anything being in their burger except actual meat. But the huge controversy may be about more than just pink slime.
The biggest concern with pink slime is that we're buying (or eating) a product that we don't exactly know what it's made of, says Prescott Frost
, a champion of sustainable agriculture and a rancher and a producer of organic, 100% grass fed beef.
"I’d have to say that the controversy over pink slime is a reaction to corporate farming, and the reaction is a natural one to our concerns about corporate farming and big agriculture," Frost says. "Every day we become more and more aware of their effects on our daily lives; whether it is the food we eat, the environment we live in or the way we treat our animals."
Pink slime makes sense for big companies because it essentially uses beef trimmings to bulk up ground beef. Once only used in dog food and cooking oil, these trimmings are sprayed with ammonia so they are safe to eat and added to most ground beef as a cheaper filler. Frost says this practice is ubiquitous because "it's gravy" for big agriculture.
"Few in our country today are comfortable with the way our food is being produced," he says. "Pink slime is just one more — perhaps more glaring example — of something we all know is going on and few of us know how to solve."
If you'd like to avoid eating and buying ground beef with pink slime in it, Frost recommends going directly to the rancher and buying organic. Furthermore, stay informed and educated on food practices, and use your dollars to show the industry what you want and what you will pay for: safe, healthy food.
Do you buy organic ground beef? Will you buy it to avoid pink slime? Tell us about it!
Jennipher Walters is the CEO and co-founder of the healthy living websites FitBottomedGirls.com and FitBottomedMamas.com. A certified personal trainer, lifestyle and weight management coach and group exercise instructor, she also holds an MA in health journalism and regularly writes about all things fitness and wellness for various online publications.