Oakland, CA – Calls for improving the safety of the meat supply by consumer advocacy groups in a Capitol Hill press conference today, while admirable, fail to recognize that not only has the meat industry made huge advances in cooperation with the USDA to reduce and even eliminate invisible pathogens, but that consumers themselves must also be a part of the solution.

“Fresh meat, including ground meat, is a perishable product. Keeping it cold, preventing cross contamination with other foods, and ensuring that it is properly cooked are really important,” said Rosemary Mucklow, Executive Director of the National Meat Association. “Huge strides have been made to reduce invisible pathogens in meat production facilities with technological interventions. Testing by the government and by the industry monitor progress in reduction. These efforts, coupled with final food preparation, have helped enormously.

I’m proud of the meat industry’s achievements to work hard at getting better and better,” said Mucklow.

The industry’s commitment to food safety is evident in the decrease in incidents of food borne illness in the past decade. The decrease is also indicative of consumers’ increased knowledge of safe food handling and preparation practices, which NMA as well as other industry organizations and government entities have diligently worked to promote. The meat industry and government agencies have spent valuable time and resources improving food safety. The results are tangible. Following is a list of technological interventions created and implemented by the meat industry in the past decade: organic acid washing, steam vacuuming, steam pasteurization, antimicrobial treatments (lactic acid washes, acetic acid washes, etc.), pre-evisceration washes, hot water pasteurization, activated lactoferrin, “rinse and chill,” non-thermal processing, high pressure processing, and irradiation, to name but a few. Research in the area of food safety is ongoing.

Press conferences and lengthy reports do little in the real world of fighting pathogens in the food supply. The meat industry has shown its commitment and dedication to its goal of providing America’s families the safest meat possible. We are using science and technology to further that goal.

National Meat Association is a non-profit trade association representing meat packers and processors, as well as equipment manufacturers and suppliers who provide services to the meat industry. The association, with over 600 members throughout the United States, includes membership in Canada, Australia and Mexico.

[NMAonline] [Responsive] [Press Releases] [Events] [Washington] [NMA is News] [Awards] [Work Together] [Hot Topics] [Resourceful] [Reliable] [and Fun] [Contact Us] [Sitemap]


Jeremy Russell
National Meat Association
(510) 763-1533
[email protected]

[Printable View]