Consumers Call For Penn. Grocer To Disclose 'Pink Slime' Content

Today, concerned Pennsylvanians are calling on Carlisle-based Giant Food Stores, the state’s largest traditional grocer, to respect consumers’ rights and label which of the ground beef products sold at their Pennsylvania stores contain Finely Textured Beef (FTB), a meat industry term for a filler made from low-grade trimmings.

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (Business Wire) — Today, concerned Pennsylvanians are calling on Carlisle-based Giant Food Stores, the state’s largest traditional grocer, to respect consumers’ rights and label which of the ground beef products sold at their Pennsylvania stores contain Finely Textured Beef (FTB), a meat industry term for a filler made from low-grade trimmings.

The call from consumers comes on the heels of an investigative report earlier this month by ABC News in which Giant Food’s parent company, Netherlands-based multinational Royal Ahold, admitted that the divisions of Ahold USA do carry ground beef containing the controversial filler. The company claims that FTB is “absolutely safe for consumption.”

“What infuriates me the most is that Giant did this without telling its consumers,” said West Chester, Pa. resident and teacher Libby Maxim when she found out about the presence of the filler in the ground beef she has been buying at her local Giant Food store for at least the last three years. “I do not care how safe Giant says this product is, it is the sheer fact that if this product is so darn good, why not advertise it? Why not make it public to your consumers?”

Although Giant Food claims it does not use ammonium hydroxide in the ground beef sold at their stores, the company has yet to disclose which antimicrobial agents go into the processing of the ground beef they carry. According to industry experts, the use of these agents is necessary since the beef trimmings used to make the filler carry an increased risk of containing pathogens like salmonella and E. coli.

Giant Food is the largest traditional grocer in Pennsylvania. The company plays a crucial role in setting standards when it comes to consumers’ rights. The choice to consume products containing the beef filler should rest with the customers, not the company. Giant Food must disclose the agents used in their Finely Textured Beef and clearly label products containing the filler so that consumers can make an informed decision.

For more information, please contact Marc Goumbri at (202) 721-8144 or mgoumbri@ufcw.org.

Pennsylvanians for Change at Giant is a coalition of consumers and activists intent on holding Giant Food to higher standards and demands that the grocery chain makes comprehensive reforms in its conduct, business practices, and company policies. On matters like environmental sustainability, labor standards, food sourcing, and community engagement, we believe Giant Food can do better and become a truly responsible company and a good neighbor. Visit www.facebook.com/PennsylvaniansForChangeAtGiant, for more information.

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