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The real truth about pink slime in N.M. schools

By Marisa Demarco [ Thu Mar 22 2012 3:49 PM ]

A couple days ago, I stumbled on a story in a Daily Word that said as of July, the state’s public schools would no longer be receiving meat products containing lean finely textured beef. (That’s pink slime.)

That begs the question: Which local districts or schools have been eating the stuff?

Turns out, the state doesn’t know because the USDA didn’t say, according to Matt Kennicott, spokesperson for the Human Services Department.

A 60-pound shipment of beef could contain between 0 and 6 pounds of pink slime. That’s all the information that’s available. The substance is safe for consumption and has no associated health risks, says Kennicott. But since articles began appearing and the term became an Internet meme, the USDA is allowing school distributors to reject pink slime starting in July. Food costs won’t increase, he adds.

No questions were raised previously with the state about what was in school lunches, he says. But it’s likely the USDA will take a closer look at ingredients given the backlash. “And we’ll monitor what we receive,” Kennicott says.