there are so many reasons i won't buy pre-ground meat. E .Coli (i like my occasional burger rare in the center), and now pink slime.
sorry--it may be perfectly safe, but i don't want ammonia-washed beef by-product in my beef. when i want ground beef for something, i either buy it someplace where they will sell me a hunk of chuck and grind it for me right then, or i will either use the kitchen-aid grinder or just pulse it in the food processor, depending on its intended use. just my solution.
Your diligence is admirable. But I'll trust my grandchildren to the folks with the lab coats. It's not a new science, and it feeds millions.
I get your point about the folks with the lab coats knowing what they're doing when it comes to the science of producing edible meat. The ammonia solution used as an antimicrobial is "generally recognized as safe" by the USDA, and clearly scores of people have been eating meat containing pink slime and not getting sick (i.e. there is no epidemic of illness resulting from using it).
On the other hand, a report by ABC says that the USDA's own scientists suggested the use of pink slime should be labelled. Clearly, they don't think it's just the same as ground beef. That's because it's not ground beef. Ground beef is beef that has been ground in a grinder, not meat particles separated from fat by a centrifuge, then treated with ammonia because it is safe to assume the stuff is riddled with bacteria. Pink slime and ground beef aren't the same, so I agree with the scientists that it should be labelled as such.
There's a reason why people don't like the idea of something like this, even beyond the fact that it is not labelled (a sin of omission). It's because when people think of ground beef, they think of ground beef. When it comes down to it, I don't want to eat a meat-product. I want to eat meat. If the meat has to be produced by means other than growing an animal and butchering it, I become suspicious of it. It's pretty clear that producers with a profit motive will do anything to wring that last bit of value out of their raw material (the cow). That profit motive will drive them up to the limit, just this side of safety. The issue with feeding this to kids is that we typically think we take extra safety measures to protect them (and we do). In this case, using pink slime seems to run counter to that. Just because using pink slime is possible and cheap, doesn't mean we should use it.
I also think Jaime Oliver's methods are absurd. Dousing meat with ammonia is over the top. This is an issue that requires careful consideration, like we're doing here, not made for TV antics.
nunc est bibendum...