Beef Company Still Cranky About That Whole Pink Slime Thing, Sues ABC News

Beef Products Inc. still has a bee in its bonnet about that tiny little pink slime controversy and it’s blaming ABC News for starting the media campaign against it. It’s feeling defamed to the tune of $1.2 billion and is suing the news network for publishing 200 “false and disparaging statements” about its lean finely textured beef product.

BPI and two other companies say their product is pure beef, reports Bloomberg News, in a complaint filed today in a South Dakota state court.

“ABC News embarked on a sustained, 30-day vendetta against this company,” BPI’s attorney said, saying that his client wants $1.2 billion in compensatory damages as well as punitive damages.

The company claims that because of the whirlwind of news coverage surrounding the beef product, it lost business and had to close three facilities and lay off 700 workers. It’s accusing ABC of publishing a “blacklist” every night of places still selling pink slime, which interfered with BPI’s business relationships.

ABC News’ senior vice president said in a statement: “The lawsuit is without merit. We will contest it vigorously.”

Beef Products Inc. Sues ABC News Over Pink Slime Reports [ABC News]

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  1. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    I fully suspect ABC will succeed. After losing your business, I suppose you have nothing to lose suing someone.

    • unpolloloco says:

      The question is whether ABC made any false claims, not whether pink slime is a health issue or not. If they did make any misleading claims, it’s possible they’d lose (but likely not to the tune of $1.2B).

      • YouDidWhatNow? says:

        The false claim was that “pink slime” was in any way something to be avoided. I hope they bankrupt ABC.

        ABC appeals to the masses with unsubstantiated fear-mongering, and the masses respond because the masses are stupid and easily swayed. This is no different than the stupidity about Taco Bell and the anti-vax “movement.” Just stupid people doing stupid things.

        Take them down.

        • Gambrinus says:

          Oh, please. Safe or not, it’s not like anyone was unaware that consumers would probably find this gross if they knew about it. If it was something that they actually wanted, the packages would’ve been plastered with “Contains lean finely textured beef product!!!” But they tried to downplay it, and people found out, and predictably went, “Uh, that sounds disgusting,” and decided they weren’t buying it anymore. The perception that a food is really freaking gross is a totally legit reason not to buy it.

          ABC just informed people about it. They’re the news, and that’s their job. What people did with that info isn’t ABC’s fault.

          • YouDidWhatNow? says:

            ” Safe or not, it’s not like anyone was unaware that consumers would probably find this gross if they knew about it.”

            Newsflash: each and every part of producing meat for human consumption is gross.

            And the people are stupid, therefore they will decided they don’t want to eat something that is perfectly fine based on their own stupidity and gullibility. ABC wasn’t “informing” anyone about it anymore than Jenny McCarthy is “informing” people about vaccines.

            • cameronl says:

              This. The whole “Pink Slime” kerfuffle was ridiculous.

              Next they’ll go behind the scenes at a sausage factory… Did you know they stuff all those icky parts into ANIMAL INTESTINES? AND THEY EXPECT US TO EAT THAT!

              I’M SHOCKED! SHOCKED I TELL YOU!

            • longfeltwant says:

              “each and every part of producing meat for human consumption is gross.”

              That’s not true at all. Some parts are gross, some less gross, some not gross at all.

              ABC accurately described the product as “pink slime”. It is in fact pink and it is in fact slimy. They accurately described the production process and the uses. That’s called “reporting the news”.

              If you like poop and human flesh in your sausage, then The Jungle won’t bother you. And perhaps it doesn’t bother you, YouDidWhatNow. But save it with trying to tell the rest of us not to be bothered. We can decide how much pink slime we want to consume, and so can you.

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                You’re wrong. You’re having an irrational, emotional response to something that you don’t actually know anything about, and are unqualified to form an opinion about.

                They weren’t reporting. Period. They were doing nothing more useful for socitey than Jenny McCarthy does when she “informs” about vaccinations.

                • longfeltwant says:

                  You have totally convinced me, YouDidWhatNow. Sir, your superior tactic of simply stating that I am wrong has totally changed my outlook. Now that you simply stated that they weren’t reporting, “period”, I am totally convinced. Thank you for helping me see the light.

                  Jenny is a baby killer and should be ashamed of herself.

                  Pink slime is safe but gross and humans decide every day not to eat things that are safe but gross. Buggers, caterpillars, moss, pink slime, horse, human flesh… these things are all safe but gross. Stop trying to tell people that they are stupid for not wanting to eat something that is gross, it just makes you look like an infant.

              • RvLeshrac says:

                Even Gordon Ramsay admits that slaughtering animals for food is one of the most horrific things to watch. He could barely keep from getting ill when watching killing, skinning, and draining.

                And that was a clean kill in a clean slaughterhouse.

            • Smiling says:

              Just because it is all gross, doesn’t mean that people don’t have the right to decide what level of gross they are willing to consume.

          • wombats lives in [redacted] says:

            The news should inform without bias. They way that they built it all up and put forth the information was in poor taste. It was not to inform people it was to shock people and for ratings.

            It’s the difference between stating the following about, Nonplant vanilla flavoring:

            In the United States, castoreum, the exudate from the castor sacs of mature beavers, has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a food additive,[33] often referenced simply as a “natural flavoring” in the product’s list of ingredients. It is commonly used in both food and beverages, especially as vanilla and raspberry flavoring.[34] It is also used to flavor some cigarettes and in perfume-making.

            VS

            up next: Your vanilla coke is flavored with BEAVER ASSHOLE SACS!!! Watch and we’ll show you how.

            • YouDidWhatNow? says:

              It’s not even so much that…it’s that they made a story *at all*.

              Because making the story, even if everything is presented completely impassionately, implies that it’s something important that you, as a consumer, need to know. Which it isn’t. People will still go apesh1t.

              Which is why if CNN, in the middle of one of their news shows, came on and said “…and by the way, nothing happened in low Earth orbit today of any importance. Nothing at all.” – which would happen to be perfectly, 100% correct, people would go apesh1t as well. WHAT ARE YOU HIDING? WHAT’S GOING ON IN LOW EARTH ORBIT!? WE NEED TO KNOW!!!

            • Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

              “up next: Your vanilla coke is flavored with BEAVER ASSHOLE SACS!!! Watch and we’ll show you how”

              LOL! Yeah, it’s all in the “marketing” of how you tell it. I’m sure we would be totally turned off by and never want to eat again, 50% or more of the “mass produced” food if we saw a graphic description of where it comes from ;-)

              • ChuckECheese says:

                I would totally love an episode of “How It’s Made” explaining the beaver ass flavoring process. Seeing that “How It’s Made” is produced in Canada, there should be no shortage of beaver ass, much as in the U.S. we have no end of Kardashian ass.

          • Plasmafox says:

            It was blatant yellow journalism. Manufacturing scandal and controversy is most certainly not the news’ job, that’s just what sells.

          • verbatim613 says:

            “…find this gross…” — whether something is gross or not is a perception. As long is it is safely processed and in a sanitary manner, the production process is not relevant.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          I think they generally let the people decide if it should be avoided. The people spoke.

          • YouDidWhatNow? says:

            The people are stupid. They have also spoken about other stupid things, like anti-vax, homeopathy, so on and so forth.

            • Dan T. says:

              Does that mean that free speech needs to be abolished, because people are too dumb to deal with it?

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                Free speech is fine. The problem is stupid people forming unqualified opinions based on irrelevant data…and then acting on it.

                • Smiling says:

                  Sounds like you think that you are the ultimate authority of what is relevant and important. Hate to tell you this, but you aren’t.

            • Bladerunner says:

              What did ABC lie about? The Anti-Vaxxers and Homeopathers are liars peddling bullshit. In this case, ABC ran spots saying “this stuff’s gross!” Guess what? It is!

              You keep making a false equivalency.

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                Nope.

                As noted, pretty much everything that happens in the process of preparing animals as meat for human consumption is gross. The fact that the “finely textured beef” looks “gross” to you is utterly irrelevant, and is presented *only* for the purpose of provoking an irrational, emotional response that is utterly uninformed.

                • Bladerunner says:

                  Sorry, you’re wrong. So long as they only presented facts or obvious opinions (“x is gross” is an obvious opinion), they are not in the wrong in any way shape or form. Perhaps you’re not from America, but rather a country that doesn’t have free speech?

                  And for the record, I don’t eat meat, so the relative grossness of meat production is irrelevant.

                  And just because it’s an emotional response (and even if it IS possible irrational, although I have some arguments for that) doesn’t make it “uninformed”. Learn what words mean. Eating bugs, to me, is gross. I’m perfectly informed on the relative protein contents, and know it’s perfectly healthy. Still gross.

                  • Smiling says:

                    No he is from the land of Narcissia, where he is right about everything and all others are just dumb know-nothing assholes who shouldn’t ever dare form opinions he hasn’t approved.

        • MutantMonkey says:

          This was the issue I had with the coverage of the topic. The impression given my many stories about Pink Slime is that it was an unhealthy product and the use of ammonia to sterilize the product, which from what I have heard, is not only not an uncommon practice, but is also a safe process.

          While the idea of this product is certainly not appetizing, it seems that these types of issues are generally only looked at from various sides that rarely, if ever, take into account food sustainability and pricing.

          • YouDidWhatNow? says:

            The issue is that it wasn’t an issue. Until the media fabricated an issue. And then the stupid masses, who are totally ignorant of and unequipped to form intelligent opinions about food production, freak out and f%ck everything up.

            People need to stop thinking they can form valid opinions about sh1t they know nothing about. If you’re not a climate researcher, your opinion about global warming is worthless. If you’re not a heart surgeon, your opinion about someone’s cardiac health is irrelevant. If you’re not a plumber, your opinion as to why my toilet constantly leaks is irrelevant.

            Which is why, if I need heart surgery, I’m going to listen to a heart surgeon…and if my toilet is wonky, I’m going to listen to a plumber. Maybe the heart surgeon is “smarter” than the plumber, but that doesn’t mean he knows f%ck all about how to fix my toilet.

            • jstimson says:

              You sir, are far to reasoned to be on the internet.

              +1

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                Inorite?

                I have this expectation for people to conduct themselves in rational manners.

                Which is wildly unreasonable…apparently.

            • Blueskylaw says:

              I’m not a plumber, but I can replace a toilet all by myself and have.

            • MutantMonkey says:

              That is some seriously wishful thinking when we have many of our congressional and senatorial members standing up and spewing false information on topics with the conviction of a highly seasoned professional. If we could get the top leaders to set some sort of decent example in this regard, it would probably go a long way towards keeping reality in check, but as it stands today, five minutes on Fox News makes you an expert in everything.

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                Stupid voters = stupid elected officials.

                Democracy: a political system by which the people are guaranteed to receive a government no better than they deserve.

            • DrLumen says:

              DDT wasn’t an issue either until it became one. Try to get some DDT now.

              I would tent to believe the primary researcher for the FDA and the same person that coined the term “pink slime”. He and another colleague (PhD’s at the FDA) voted against it’s approval for use as filler. I would listen to them than somebody on the internet that has an axe to grind and ultimately one of the “stupid people”.

              Personally, I don’t think it’s that bad but if I have a choice of meat I’ll definitely buy the one without it. Since most grocery stores have quit selling meat with it I have noticed a lot less bone grit/cartilage than before. That makes the slight increase in price worth it to me.

              • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                PhDs at the FDA can make irrational emotional decisions in lieu of being rational as well.

                There’s not a single thing wrong with the stuff. Asserting that it is something to be avoided is stupid.

                • DrLumen says:

                  I have to wonder why you are so adamant about this stuff? What is the axe you are grinding? Are you getting paid by BPI?

                  What do you care if I prefer not to consume pink slime? Am I also stupid for not wanting to eat asparagus, chocolate covered ants, pickled grasshoppers or monkey brains?

                  Also, is it not possible that other PhD’s within the FDA were making irrational, emotional or a profiteering based decision for the approval of pink slime?

                  No amount of some idiot calling me stupid will change my mind.

                  • eldritch2k4 says:

                    “What do you care if I prefer not to consume pink slime?”

                    Based on an irrational response to bad journalism (there is absolutely nothing unsafe about “pink slime” and you were content to eat beef that contained it until ABC and Jamie Oliver started crying about it and you would have never known about the issue because, when combined into ground beef, you can’t tell a texture difference…because its beef), beef producers have had to halt use of the filler, which amounts to wasting tons of beef. This has driven up the cost of ground beef by about 33 – 50% ($1 – $1.50 per pound).

                    So, my care in the matter is that your irrational response has cost me money.

                    This is, of course, assuming that you ate beef before the pink slime debacle. If you didn’t, screw you, because you had no stake (ba-dum-tish!) in the matter and cost me more money.

              • Such an Interesting Monster says:

                LIke that one doctor who insisted vaccines caused autism, wrote papers and books about it, and had studies to prove it, and later was found to be totally full of shit and had fabricated everything?

                Sometimes you gotta use common sense even when dealing with a “professional”. Would you believe your plumber if he told you the only way to fix your stopped up toilet was to replace your kitchen faucet? If you choose yes, you’re a dumbass and deserve to get scammed. If you choose no because your common sense says the two are unlikely to be related, then congratulations, your IQ is at least one standard deviation above the average American idiot.

        • Mambru says:

          “ABC appeals to the masses with unsubstantiated fear-mongering, and the masses respond because the masses are stupid and easily swayed.”

          Sounds like any media outlet in the states

        • Tim says:

          When it comes to proving libel/slander of public figures (which this company counts as), it’s a very high bar. First, you have to prove that what was reported is false. Then you have to prove that the defendant had “actual malice” in reporting the false information.

          So yeah, the beef company will lose.

          • YouDidWhatNow? says:

            The clear implication was that it was some kind of a contamination. And the agenda was clear – to get the stuff out of the ground beef. From the standpoint of ruining an industry, that’s pretty malicious.

        • TheCorporateGeek Says Common Sense Is The Key says:

          You’re blinded by the mass food producers. Ammonia in your beef isn’t safe period. Someone should slap you upside the head and bring you back into the real world.

          If I say a restaurant sucks because a waitress gave me shitty service and they lose business, not my problem. Same principle here.

  2. kataisa says:

    Pink Slime: It’s What’s Not For Dinner.

  3. crispyduck13 says:

    I’d like to know what exactly ABC news said that was so false and disparaging. When I watched the several reports they showed on TV I understood perfectly that yes, technically this is beef, but it’s made in a pretty fucked up way that most people have no knowledge of. People deserve to know what they are eating and how it is made. They are, after all, the ones paying for it.

    Sounds like BPI is equating “factual” with “disparaging,” and also assuming that journalists are going to not report something factual just because it may also damage the subject’s reputation.

    • STXJK says:

      > People deserve to know what they are eating and how it is made. They are, after all, the ones paying for it.

      This.

    • Tim says:

      That’s the key: “false and disparaging.” There was a ton of stuff that was disparaging. But nothing that was false.

      • longfeltwant says:

        Exactly. Look, Beef Products Inc, you sell pink slime. It’s what you do… or, it’s what you did at least. It turns out that people didn’t want your product once they realized they were eating it. Why don’t you consider making beef products that people want to eat? I know, that sounds crazy, but you should think about it.

    • Such an Interesting Monster says:

      It’s all in the spin. It would have been just as easy to make “pink slime” sound like the best shit ever and tout it as a revolution in meat production. Let’s start by calling it “pink gold” instead.

      “Look, they’re taking the leftover bits and turning them into something wholesome and delicious. Less waste means more savings for the consumer!”

      “To alleviate any chance of contamination they use a brilliant sterilization method using ammonia, that kills off any possible bacteria, making sure it’s 100% safe to eat! And you can’t say that about ordinary ground beef, can you?”

      “And of course it tastes just like beef, cause that’s exactly what it is, 100% beef! Amazing!”

      Yadda yadda yadda. They purposefully spun this issue as something bad, essentially convincing people, without a single iota of scientific proof, that this stuff was somehow undesirable to eat.

      It was essentially a smear campaign that has zero facts or proof behind it.

    • Bob A Dobalina says:

      factual- reporting the nature of the substance and potential health impacts

      disparaging- calling a product marketed as a foodstuff “slime” and making a concerted attempt to damage its business by supplying the names of its customers

  4. Blueskylaw says:

    “BPI and two other companies say their product is pure beef”

    They have a point there – ears, eyes, feet, lips, tongues, noses, anuses, ball sacks,
    and udders are all “pure” beef as considered within the spirit of the law.

    • Bunnies Attack! says:

      See, this is exactly why they’re suing though. The pink slime isn’t made like hot dogs (Oscar Meyer please don’t sue!), its the fatty trimmings off of “normal” meat cuts and the leftover bits of meat that are stuck to the bone that have the fat mechanically separated and mechanically separated off the bone with a centrifuge. The remaining bone and fat is discarded, whats left actually is meat, just in tiny pieces but with 0% fat.

      • Gambrinus says:

        Imagine if you walked into a fancy restaurant, and didn’t recognize a dish, so you asked him what it was. He says, “Well, sir, we start with finest leftover bits of sinew, connective tissue, and cartilage, along with fat and trimmings still stuck to the bone. We then place them in a centrifuge to mechanically separate the meat from the bone, while heating it to 100 degrees and reducing it to a delicate, liquid texture. It’s then treated in a bath of ammonia, to remove any contamination from the cast off meat, and giving it a healthy grey color. Finally we compress it into blocks and flash freeze it. And we mix it in with other meat, so you’ll hardly even notice.” Does that sound like something you’d order? Just cause it’s made of beef doesn’t mean it’s something people are gonna want to eat.

        • Southern says:

          Escargo.

        • Bunnies Attack! says:

          I, sir, accept your retort and counter with one of my own:

          “Well sir, first we take a baby cow, cram it on a dusty lot shoulder-to-shoulder with a thousand other cows, then we feed it corn and other scraps that its stomach can’t digest which makes it sick so we pump it full of growth hormones and antibiotics to keep it barely alive enough to be fit for slaughter. We then funnel it into a walkway in absolute terror (because terror hormones are nature’s tenderizer) where a pneumatic hammer punches a neat hole into its head. We then we lift it by its hind legs while machines cut its neck, drain the blood and gut it before we carve a chunk out and broil it for your dinner. Now, would you like the 12 oz or the 16 oz?”

          Does that sound like something you’d order? There’s almost no processed food product that sounds appetizing when you describe how its made.

          • ap0 says:

            But… ammonia! And machinery!

            I think people think cows are lovingly butchered by a kindly old butcher who sheds a tear for each one he has to kill to feed us.

          • Gambrinus says:

            I mean, fair enough, but there are a sizable number of people who do think that’s disgusting and decide not to eat meat, or only eat meat they believe was humanely raised and killed. There’s nothing wrong with informing consumers and letting them make their own choices. And there’s certainly no rule that consumers’ buying choices have to follow any sort of logic. Isn’t being a better-informed consumer kind of what this site is all about?

            • YouDidWhatNow? says:

              Nope. Because “informing” people about things that don’t matter implies that they do matter. And then the “informed” people make bad decisions based on irrelevant data.

              I wish to be informed of the religion of the butcher. Or his race. Whether or not he/she is gay. I want to know if the cow was old or young, and whether or not it had had any calves. I want to know what the calves’ names were. I want to know whether the cow was butchered with electric tools or plain hand tools. Did the room in which the butchering occurred have good feng shui? What was the dominant astrological sign when the cow was butchered? What was the sign it was born under?

              Etc.

              • longfeltwant says:

                Okay. Well then go get a job as a reporter, then make those things into news stories. Because the rest of us don’t care about those things.

                What? No? Nobody cares about those things, but they do care about pink slime? Well okay, then, that’s the way news gets published.

                • YouDidWhatNow? says:

                  People care about things that don’t matter. Because they’re easily sensationalized and pander to the lowest common denominator. Which is exactly why the media latched onto this.

              • Shadowman615 says:

                OK, but how does that translate into a legal argument? ABC should not have told anyone about this because people were better off not knowing about what we do? Because it’s really unimportant and it sounds bad if it’s not left ignored?

                I don’t see them getting far with that argument.

          • Tim says:

            But if you tell that to someone and the person chooses not to buy it, have you broken the law? No. You told the truth, and the truth is an absolute defense to libel and slander.

        • ninabi says:

          Don’t forget- the final product comes from around the globe- scraps of cows from multiple states and countries in South America. So many sources of potential infection in just one burger.

          What I cannot understand is why the “pink slime” factory shut down. Was it not fit to add to dog/cat food? High end pet food avoids corn and other fillers, with an emphasis on “pure meat”. And no other countries wanted the product? Perhaps that fact is telling.

          • CheritaChen says:

            Excellent point, I think.

            Anyway, count me among those who have no love for the media BUT are thrilled at any loss suffered by the murder industry. I hope BPI loses.

          • GitEmSteveDaveHatesChange says:

            No, the reason is that pet foods rely on higher fat content than what LFTB contains. So they could not easily add such a product to their food and maintain the fat content they needed.

            Trimmings used to be sold to pet food makers, because there was no way to economically remove all the fat. The pet food companies loved this, because it was a good way to get their supplies cheap, as the meat processors just wanted to get something for what was leftover. But then they developed a process to get most of the lean beef out, and separate the fat, which meant that instead of being at the mercy of the pet food companies, they could sell the beef as well as the fat to different companies.

        • DrLumen says:

          +1. lol

    • Carlos Spicy Weiner says:

      You realize, I bet the American Indians used all those parts of the Bison too – waste not, want not ;-).

  5. dolemite says:

    A cow is “100% beef” Beef = cow. That doesn’t mean when I buy a steak I want it to be glued back together bits that resemble a steak or that I want my hamburger meat to be organs, entrails, tendons, bones, tails or udders either. I expect it to be all meat from certain parts of the cow.

    • Bunnies Attack! says:

      Sigh, this is also why they should sue. The pink slime is fat-free finely ground beef (see my comment above) and was added to ground beef to make it leaner… not used to glue steaks together or anything else like that. The meat glue thing was another blow-out-of-proportion issue altogether.

      • who? says:

        My wife has a business making and selling handmade soaps and moisturizers. All made from the finest locally grown farm products. Pastured lamb and pork, locally grown olive oil and herbs. Very good, high quality stuff. The lye used in the soapmaking process has finished reacting with the fats, so it’s gone, and the soap is perfectly safe to eat.

        Even though every single ingredient on the ingredient list for the soap is an edible farm product, I wouldn’t eat it. It isn’t food. Neither is this all beef pink stuff. It’s ground and separated junk made from cow carcasses. Not food.

        • Bunnies Attack! says:

          I can’t believe that you’re comparing eating bits of beef that are too close to the bone to easily carve out and bits of beef on the outside that has too much fat to eating soap. Step back for a minute and consider that.

        • ChuckECheese says:

          Your analogy isn’t so hot, because we don’t eat lye. On the other hand, we don’t eat industrial ammonia either. I think this is why people don’t like slimy pink meat oozings.

      • JayDeEm says:

        For some reason, I read the words ‘meat glue’ in Homer Simpson’s voice, followed by ‘ahhhghhhhghhh’

    • Blueskylaw says:
    • longfeltwant says:

      Beef is meat. Cows are more than meat. Leather is not beef. Bone is not beef. Hoof is not beef.

  6. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    ABC can use the Fox News defense. Fox won a court case in Florida on the basis that they have a first amendment right to lie.

  7. LionMan says:

    A state court? Sounds like a really nice case of forum shopping. Then again, the whole case is pretty desperate for something.

  8. ScandalMgr says:

    Facts have a liberal bias.

    IANAL, but the only outcome: NWBTL (Nobody Wins But The Lawyers).

  9. Oh_No84 says:

    So now you can sue the news for reporting the news??
    I can believe our government was bought by the beef industry to give them special laws to be able to do this.

    This lawsuit is a joke.

  10. sir_eccles says:

    Wasn’t it ABC that broadcast the Jamie Oliver program about pink slime where he completely misrepresented the product by pouring liquid ammonia on meat rather than the gaseous form actually used?

    That could be an obvious false statement.

    • GitEmSteveDaveHatesChange says:

      That was the one about nuggets. He showed them how nuggets are made in other countries, and while he told the children it’s how they are made in America, he had to re-dub the audio to state that, in America, this is NOT how nuggets are made.

  11. HogwartsProfessor says:

    Can I just chew my own fucking food? Stop processing the hell out of everything. Sheesh.

  12. Emily says:

    Oh good, sue the Fourth Estate for doing its job.

    The way for a company to combat bad news (if it can be combated at all) is with PR and publicity efforts, not a legal case. The fact that the lawsuit is likely to backfire on the industry is just one reason for this. Do they remember Oprah vs. the beef industry? That went so well for their litigious selves.

  13. Velifer says:

    Going by the misinformation spewed around this thread, yes, the company absolutely has a claim. The coverage was extraordinarily skewed.

    First we take an animal with high intelligence and we fire a bolt gun right into it’s head, like this: (graphic image of slaughter). Next we get a flame thrower to take off the hair, and slice it from balls to gullet, letting the guts spill out. Then, we take this big fatty abdomen chunk right here and put it in a vat of chemicals. After that, we run a bunch of gaseous carcinogens around it until it turns nice and brown, then slice it up and put it in plastic with crushed rocks industrially mined.

    You want some?

    Message matters, and saying “it’s the truth” is not always a defense.

    • longfeltwant says:

      I stopped reading when you said cows have high intelligence. That’s funny stuff, but I don’t have time for jokes right now.

      • Velifer says:

        Bacon doesn’t come from cows.
        But geese aren’t known for high intelligence either.

        • ChuckECheese says:

          I got some Australian beef bacon from Trader Joe’s awhile back. It smelled great, tasted sorta ordinary. It was healthy, and would probably make a good … something. I don’t know, I wasn’t really into it. I wish TJ’s would bring Niman Ranch products back.

    • Tim says:

      “Skewing” the news is not, and has never been, illegal.

      And yes, “it’s the truth” is an absolute defense against defamation.

      • Velifer says:

        I’m not gonna go all internet lawyer on ya, but a quick search will show you that’s not the case. It’s often a strong defense, but not an absolute one.

  14. theSillyGirl says:

    Here’s an article that says the Media can legally lie

    http://www.projectcensored.org/top-stories/articles/11-the-media-can-legally-lie/

  15. alternety says:

    I really think producer has a legitimate beef.

    As explained multiple times here, the reporting was all sensationalist garbage insinuating something was wrong with the material. It placed the product in front of the sorely undereducated and perhaps not so intelligent masses. Exacerbated by the ick factor that has developed in the US as we have distanced ourselves further and further from the realities of the world.

    There are two or three alternate universes at play (just in the US). There is reality – mostly unused.

    There is the one so many residents believe in – very popular. Has relatively few congruences with reality. It denies much of science and technology; even though they have no actual concept of how things work. There must be nothing in their universe that could possibly ever hurt anyone (e.g., little round magnets). And such things must be fixed, regardless of spending billions to keep 3 idiots or unsupervised children from getting hurt. Everything must be “pretty”. Ugly in all forms is ignored or derided. No one should take drugs (massive costs for ultimately impossible control measures (remember how well prohibition worked), a new generation of bootleggers for drugs, massive crime at all levels to feed habits or control territory, destruction of countries (e.g., Mexico).

    The third popular universe is politicians – I have no idea what they think is real. There is of course at least two sub-universes in this category. Public and private.

  16. Harry Greek says:

    I love the good ol’ boy attitudes that came out of this one.

    You had that broke back closet case from Texas telling us; “Dude, it’s beef”. And now, beef makers are suing to show them how things are dun!!!

    Listen, if growing up on cow anus/ligament/eye lid burgers, soaked in ammonia, is so good – the people would have continued eating this garbage. It’s like cigarettes. Once they proved they were poisonous, cigarette makers hired every questionable Dr. to defend smoking. Because the cigarette makers don’t care they were selling poison back then! And, they still don’t care.

    So, they will defend, however that can – to keep making money. Even if it means people get hurt. And, if you do get hurt or suffer, well,… that’s YOUR problem. Not the maker of the awful product who is harming you. Even when they lie about how damaging it truly is.

    • GitEmSteveDaveHatesChange says:

      I would not eat this product alone for one reason. It’s too lean. Add it to some fat so that it gets up to 20% fat, and I would gladly eat a burger made of it.

      It’s not “cow anus/ligament/eye lid burgers, soaked in ammonia”, much to your dismay. It is trimmings from the cuts of meat that you pay a premium for that are cut off because they are too fatty. Since these are from production lines, the trimmings are pushed into barrels on the side and when the barrels are full, they cart them off to be processed, unlike the cuts of meat, which are pushed onto a conveyor as soon as they are trimmed to be packaged. Because the trimmings spend time in the so called “danger zone” of temperature, they are treated with a gaseous form of ammonia to kill any pathogens that may have begun reproducing while the meat was not being actively cooled. It’s not because the meat is dangerous, it’s because there may be naturally occurring pathogens that already existed in the meat that were given a chance to take hold because the trimmings were not kept below a certain temperature.

      • NorthAlabama says:

        so, if i understand, it starts as pure beef, that is allowed to sit at room temperature and become dangerous to eat.

        next, it is treated with ammonia, in hopes of killing all the bad things that grew in the beef while it was allowed to sit at room temperature.

        but it’s not really dangerous, they just treated the room temperature contaminated beef with gaseous ammonia to what…make it smell or taste better?

        i think i’ll stay away from pink slime, thank you much…

      • Harry Greek says:

        This doesn’t make it sound more appetizing.

        Oh! It’s just GAS of ammonia. Not actual ammonia! How silly of me,.. to think that ammonia particles are getting in my food and into my body. No way in hell THAT will ever ever cause any health concerns.

        Either way, the consumers have decided, they don’t want this. To blame ABC, because they showed the public what happens to the food they put into their bodies, is wrong on the beef maker’s part.

        ABC pulled back the curtain, the public said ‘ew’ and ABC is at fault? This is just backwood business men puffing up their chests – because they lost money on a food engineering venture.

  17. Maxedaddy says:

    That’s like BP Oil suing Louisianna for tainting their oil with their fresh marshlands!

  18. alternety says:

    It is really fortunate that the same group who has fought pink slime does not understand what is in scrapple.

  19. Tim says:

    Wow, people are massively uninformed.

    It doesn’t matter whether ABC’s story was skewed, sensationalist or whatever. It doesn’t matter if ABC made it look bad. None of that is illegal, thanks to the First Amendment.

    What matters is whether ABC lied. And no one here has pointed to a lie ABC told.

  20. Bob A Dobalina says:

    700 illegal immigrants turned out into the streets.

    This will add to the problem of the casa-less

  21. glopezz05 says:

    No one had a problem with it before the stories came out…

    • Shadowman615 says:

      As is true for many things. Child labor, for example. The Watergate scandal, So what? Are we better off as uninformed consumers?

  22. VeganPixels says:

    Their own researcher who coined the term a decade ago has a different opinion.

  23. Obtruder says:

    Ehh, or you, Beef Products, Inc, could not try to dupe the public into buying a repackaged versions of meat leftovers without revealing what it actually is and be pissed when a news company figures it out and doesnt think the public would appreciate it much. Pink Slime is not ground beef, no matter which way you look at it.

  24. tghaney says:

    My elementary school in the early 1960’s thought it a great idea to take the first grade to a meat packing plant for a field trip. Ugh ! Gross ! I did’t know anything about being vegetarian back then, but that ill concieved trip cured me of ever eating hot dogs again. Something akin to pink slime was stirred up and extruded into hot dog shapes, the smell was horrid and watching the pig heads going through a machine that looked like small car wash spinners to get every last bit of pork off the bones was nightmarish.

  25. Anubis says:

    Seems people are having a knee-jerk reaction to the use of ammonia. Most water you drink has been treated with chlorine, an equally dangerous chemical. Yet I’ve yet to hear mobs clamoring about that. Lye is in soap, no revolt against soap yet. There’s acid in your body, no complaints from anyone…