Meat-industry leaders have their shirts in a knot after the Kansas City Star published articles describing what’s been happening to the beef industry.
The leaders complain that they offered the newspaper full co-operation, providing statistical information and allowing visits to feedlots and packing plants.
What seems to upset them is the report that some people get sick when they buy steaks and roasts that have been “needled” to make them tender, but don’t label the beef so consumers know it ought to be thoroughly cooked throughout.
The beef-packing industry has been resisting pressure to label “tenderized” beef.
In Canada, Edmontonians who ate “rare” steaks they barbecued fell will with E. coli 0157:H7 food poisoning. They traced the harmful bacteria to beef from XL Foods Inc. at Brooks, Alta., tenderized and sold by Costco.
The meat industry’s reaction is familiar to me: shoot the messenger!