Home > Uncategorized > Resolution for the New Year: Not to let my family victims of corporate food poisoning.

Resolution for the New Year: Not to let my family victims of corporate food poisoning.

Good morning, 2011.

With 2010 having seen recalls on lettuce, mushrooms, beef, chicken, eggs, and various other foods grown locally, not to mention the imported pet foods and baby formula mixtures from China, I was almost ready to accept this as a way of life in the 21st century.  The alternatives I was seeing were being careful about what you found at the local supermarket and keeping up with the latest recalls.  Or buy only locally; know your suppliers and processors intimately.

Ok, maybe not intimately, but well enough to know how they handle your meat and veg.  Then, I read this article, specifically the first truth about fast food hamburgers.  I don’t always believe everything I read, especially on the internet, so I waited to remark on this until I had done a little more discovery.

If you didn’t read the article I linked, here it is in a nutshell: the majority of fast food hamburgers in the United States are produced and provided by a company called Beef Products Inc.  BPI uses meat processing and slaughter house beef trimmings to make ground beef.  Because these fatty trimmings are more likely to be contaminated by e. coli and salmonella they came up with a “process” to sterilize the meat by injecting it with ammonia.  By the way, BPI and the USDA refer to this ammonia injection as a “processing agent” and therefore it doesn’t need to be listed on the label.

Ammonia is a poison.  When it reacts with water it creates ammonium hydroxide which is an alkali (or ‘base’ for those who learned the new science) and is extremely corrosive.  This corrosive action causes liquefaction necrosis of living tissue it comes in contact with.  In other words, it dissolves and kills living tissue, hence its ability to kill e. coli and salmonella when ammonia is added to raw, wet, fatty ground beef byproducts.

Now, BPI in their own documentation, says that ammonia is essential for life, and that the human body naturally produces ammonia.  And this is true.  The human body does produce ammonia AS A WASTE PRODUCT.  Humans and animals do not consume ammonia as a nutrient.  There is no nutritional value to ammonia for human beings.

They also claim that the residual ammonia in their beef products is lower than that in American Cheese.  Well, American Cheese, or as they say ‘cheese food product’, is well known as one of the worst products in the grocery store.  The fact that it has more ammonia than BPI’s burgers certainly isn’t an argument for BPI’s burgers being good for you.  After all, even from the start BPI’s burgers are made from waste products; what used to be called beef byproducts which was sent off to the glue, pet food, and rendering plants.

This is not a new revelation though.  A year ago, the New York Times reported on this and BPI sued Iowa State University for disclosing the process.  Apparently, BPI didn’t want people to know about their “process” and how they got USDA approval.  Frankly, it doesn’t surprise me that the USDA would approve this “process”.  It is, after all, their job to promote US agriculture.  If that means approving a process that poisons people, but allows an agricultural byproduct to be fed to humans, I guess they’re doing their job.   After all, their function is promoting US agricultural products, not food safety.  The Food and Drug Administration is suppose to do that.  Government is government though, and one agency isn’t likely to disapprove of a process that another has approved of.

This did get me to thinking, though.  What else is out there that we’ve been told is good for us but really isn’t?  What else is really made from agricultural byproducts?  More over, what have we been feeding to our children?

  • American Cheese
  • Chicken Nuggets
  • Chicken Patties
  • Pork Patties
  • Fish Sticks

Pretty much anything that is ground up and then reformed to look like the food it might come from.

The sickest part of all this is that Beef Products Inc has been dumping this industrial waste into our food supply since 2002.  It wasn’t until December 30, 2009 that this was brought to public light.  Mind you, many people still don’t know about this.  Or maybe they just don’t care.  Perhaps its like that old saying about sausage; don’t ask what’s in it just enjoy it.  Sorry, I just can’t enjoy this.

Oh, and you can enjoy that sausage.  I couldn’t find any references to ammonia being added to the meat in sausage or hot dog making.  So go ahead and enjoy them but buy real cuts of beef and have it ground to your liking.

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