Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Treehugger: "Another Great Reason to Go Veg- They are Gassing the Meat

How do you tell if meat is fresh? Smell? Colour? Date stamp? You just lost one test- The Food and Drug Admin in the US allows supermarkets to pack red meat in carbon monoxide gas- just as your lips get a lovely shade of red when you leave the car running in the garage, the meat stays red and fresh looking for weeks. (the two pieces shown are both two weeks old, guess which one got the suicide treatment). It is supposed to be safe but the Consumer Federation of America and the advocacy group Safe Tables Our Priority say the bright red colour could mask spoilage and dangerous bacteria in older meat or meat that has not been kept at the proper temperature. Rep John Dingell of Michigan sez: 'It's just common sense that when consumers buy meat, they use color as an important indicator of its freshness...For F.D.A. to rely on a promise of some stamp on the package that says 'use or freeze by' is just naive.' Here is a project for Make- connect tailpipe to refrigerator and have better looking food. ::New York Times
You really need to get out of Florida, move to Washington DC and become a lobbyist! Sounds like that would be the best job for you.
Controled air packaging is not always a bad thing. But I got to agree that this use to make it seem fresh when it might not be is not the best idea around. I know back flushing of chicken with c02 keeps it from spoiling up to 21 days vs 7-10 on ice pack. It the lack of o2 that makes the difference if you maintain proper temps. There are a lot of foods that use this method that a while back could not be shipped beyond local areas that people now enjoy all over. Its not just meet. If you think about it Frozen foods, canned foods, dried foods, salted foods are all methods of preserving shelf life. I just think it has to be done in an honest method so that people understand what they are getting. Since I work in the food buz and have a degree in Food Science I have a little bit more understanding of some of the processes. Without some of the advancements made in the past we would have spoiled foods as one of the major causes death and sickness like in was a long time ago. Its still not perfect but there is always two sides to a story. Off soap box.
Tom Hundley
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I'm Stacey. I'm a 31(!)-year-old Wisconsin girl living in sunny South Florida. The highlights in my life are my lovely boyfriend, my aloof cats, my adorable/adoring stepdogs, my two lumbering tortoises, select family members, being outside, being underwater, taking pictures, yadda yadda. Stay tuned for lots of babbling!

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States


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Making a difference

A small boy lived by the ocean. He loved the creatures of the sea, especially the starfish, and he spent much of his time exploring the seashore.

One day the boy learned there would be a minus tide that would leave the starfish stranded on the sand.

When the tide went out, he went down to the beach, began picking up the stranded starfish, and tossing them back into the ocean.

An elderly man who lived next door came down to the beach to see what the boy was doing. Seeing the man's quizzical expression, the boy paused as he approached. "I'm saving the starfish!" the boy proudly declared.

When the neighbor saw all of the stranded starfish he shook his head and said: "I'm sorry to disappoint you, young man, but if you look down the beach, there are stranded starfish as far as the eye can see. And if you look up the beach the other way, it's the same. One little boy like you isn't going to make much of a difference."

The boy thought about this for a moment. Then he reached his small hand down to the sand, picked up another starfish, tossed it out into the ocean, and said: "Well, I sure made a difference for that one!"

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