School District Moves to Get Pink Slime Off Its Menus
Grocers taking products with pink slime off shelves also
ANCHORAGE - For years schools have been serving USDA ground beef that contains "lean beef trimmings," or what's now being called "pink slime."
The product is exposed to ammonium hydroxide gas to kill bacteria, which is a cause for concern for many across the country.
The USDA buys seven millions pounds of the filler for school lunches ever year, but after an investigation consumers around the U.S. starting raising questions about what they were eating.
That led the USDA to allow districts opt out of purchasing that meat.
Will the Anchorage School District be one of those? The short answer: Yes.
“It's what the public wants. It is and has been a safe product, certainly records would indicate that, but the public would like to change and we respect that,” said Eaton.
It's likely not all of the beef will be used by the end of the year, but Eaton says schools won't be bombarded with the product.
“It’s important to note if any parents or students are worried, we offer choices every day. If they don't choose to have a beef product, they can have things like chicken and salad and things like that. So there's definitely other choices available,” said Eaton.
Even more choices will be available next year when the district plans to add more fresh fruits and veggies to the menu and will incorporate whole grains as well.
For now the nutrition director advises parents, if they have a problem with the beef, have their kids choose to eat something else.
Grocery stores around the country are also opting out of the pink slime ground beef. The list of stores now includes Albertson's, Safeway, Walmart, BJ’s Wholesale and Giant Food Stores. The nation's largest retailer, Kroger Co., announced yesterday it would stop buying the beef for its 2,400 stores in 31 states.