All but three states in the nation have decided that their public schools will not order ground beef that contains the controversial “pink slime,” for the 2012 – 2013 school year, The Associated Press reports.
Pink slime, which has been around for years, is a filler made from meat scraps that are treated with heat and ammonia to kill off bacteria. Although federal regulators say the substance is edible, the product became part of a national controversy earlier this year. Various restaurants and supermarkets such as McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) and Supervalue (NYSE:SVU) have promised to stop using it.
Until now, states participating in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program were not offered a choice to buy beef sans the slime. However, the USDA is offering schools more than one option when it comes to ordering ground beef for the 2012 – 2013 school year. The meat without the filler costs about 3% more than the meat with the pink slime.
Only schools in Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota have ordered beef that may contain pink slime.