Senator: Hundreds of jobs lost in ‘pink slime’ controversySen. John Thune, R-S.D., said the current national uproar over the so-called “pink slime” beef product made by Dakota Dunes-based Beef Products Inc. has cost hundreds of people their jobs.
By: Denise Ross, The Daily Republic
Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., said the current national uproar over the so-called “pink slime” beef product made by Dakota Dunes-based Beef Products Inc. has cost hundreds of people their jobs.
Thune blamed sensationalized media coverage and “misperceptions” for the controversy.
Last week, BPI announced it was closing three of four plants that produce what’s called “lean, finely textured beef” in the meat-packing industry. About 600 jobs were cut.
“I’m very sorry people are losing their jobs over this,” Thune said. “It’s very sensationalized by negative news coverage and an agenda certain news organizations have adopted.
“This is about a product that USDA has stated is safe for consumption. All of us have been consumers of the product produced by BPI. As more facts come out and are shown to be the truth, I hope there’s a way of getting the genie back in the bottle.”
The food product is created by taking tiny pieces of beef and fat left over from processing, heating the mixture, and then using a centrifuge to spin off the fat. The resulting product is then sprayed with ammonium hydroxide gas to kill dangerous bacteria and molded into usable packages for eventual use with other products.
An industry spokesman has objected to describing it as “filler,” saying it is beef.