Is It Red or White?

A (highly fascinating) debate on meat classification

Yesterday evening over post-work cocktails, several Alibi staffers held a discussion on the topic of what qualifies meat as red or white. It seems that most people consider meats like beef, venison, buffalo and lamb to be red, while birds, fish, and pork are among white meats. I've always taken issue with pork being considered white meat, assuming people only thought that due to '90s marketing, namely the pork industry's ad campaign declaring "Pork: the other white meat."

Last week I ran across a cancer study which advised red meats to be limited in one's diet due to the fact they were found to cause cancer (strangely, they also advised folks not to eat legumes). Here, red meat was considered to be beef, pork and lamb. Meanwhile, our happy hour group managed to concluded that there probably are not any strict definitions of red or white meat, and that maybe it's just literal.

Looking around on the web, it turns out others are peeved by pork's white meat classification too, but the only real answer I could come up with was both yes and no. Nutritional standards classify red meat as meat from mammals, while gastronomical standards say red meat is meat that's red when raw. The debate continues...