Author: Tasha Cain | Published: 4:30 PM EST February 22, 2019 | Updated: 11:17 PM EST February 22, 2019
A pink, slimy meat by-product made from slaughterhouse trimmings can now legally be classified as ground beef.
It was repeatedly dubbed "pink slime," and after a South Dakota based company caught backlash for producing it, the business submitted a request to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to have it evaluated, according to WGBH-NPR Boston.
"Pink slime" and manufacturer Beef Products Inc. were the focus of a 2012 ABC News documentary. The news network later settled a defamation lawsuit regarding that reporting.
Since the 1990s, "pink slime" was considered a standard filler or additive to ground beef. But, now it can legally be considered “ground beef” on its own, according to New Food Economy.
The new classification of the product means that legally speaking, it’s no different than burger meat.
Beef Product’s Inc. says on its website ground beef has always been made with beef trimmed from the whole muscle cuts, and the difference is the precision that it uses to trim the meat.