(I’m posting this here because it seems that of the available discussion categories, this is probably the most relevant; but it is in fact a much broader topic than that.)
I’m sure everyone recalls the brouhaha that broke out in 2012 when media reports emerged of the apparently widespread use of so-called “lean, finely-textured beef” in ground beef sold by major grocers and in hamburgers sold by fast-food chains & other restaurateurs. In response to the public outcry, many grocers & fast-food restaurants said that they would stop using LFTB in their ground beef.
The largest producer of LFTB filed a defamation lawsuit against a major media company seeking almost $2 billion for what the claimaint said were false claims about their product. In 2017, the lawsuit was settled for what the claimant’s attorney said was the largest amount ever paid for a media defamation suit in the US.
What I am wondering is what has become of LFTB since then. Are grocers who said they would no longer sell ground beef that contained it, and restaurants that said they would no longer sell hamburgers that are made from it, still holding to those pledges? And will they continue to going forward?
Given the outcome of the lawsuit, it seems highly doubtful that any major media outlets will dare to report on this topic in the foreseeable future …
edit: While internet-searching for info for this post, I came across the following article from beefmagazine.com (thread title reflects this finding):
On Dec. 21, Beef Products Incorporated (BPI) notified its customers that its signature product, Lean Finely Textured Beef (LFTB), would now be classified as simply “Ground Beef.” …
This change was made possible after an extensive review by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).
(And of course I am sure there will be some (many?) here who will just say that they grind their own beef “and you should, too.” Yes, I know how to grind beef, but I don’t think I should have to sacrifice this major convenience for such a fundamental food staple as ground beef.)
background info at: Wikipedia article on Pink Slime