Monday, October 04, 2010

Drop that Nugget. Right Now.

Because it's disgusting and possibly a sin, that's why.

Say hello to mechanically separated chicken. It’s what all fast-food chicken is made from--things like chicken nuggets and patties. Also, the processed frozen chicken in the stores is made from it. Basically, the entire chicken is smashed and pressed through a sieve—bones, eyes, guts, and all. It comes out looking like this.

There’s more: because it’s crawling with bacteria, it will be washed with ammonia, soaked in it, actually. Then, because it tastes gross, it will be reflavored artificially. Then, because it is weirdly pink, it will be dyed with artificial color. But, hey, at least it tastes good, right?


I'm informed that this is essentially the process that gets us packaged meat slices, like Buddig ham and whatnot as well. I'm going to go vomit now.

6 comments:

Karen in Wichita said...

As is usual with forwardables, it's a mix of true and false info.

http://www.snopes.com/food/prepare/msm.asp

Scott B. said...

Mmmm...chicken goo....

Russell Arben Fox said...

Granted, Karen, it's not really any different from every other kind of meat slurry or liquefied meat product; if you've eaten hot dogs, you've eaten the pink goo, or something almost identical to it. As to the allegations in the post, I hope your correction is accurate--it'd be nice to know that my children, when they eat Wal-Mart's crappy-but-affordable chicken nuggets, aren't eating eyes or beaks--but I confess that I wonder how much "quality control" there exists in the slaughterhouses, when stuff gets tossed into the rending vat....

(By the way, nice blog! I'm going to have to bookmark you.)

Matt said...

It is pretty gross, but is there anything especially gross about eyes and beaks? I expect that that sort of stuff is mostly what makes up gelatin, for example. And, other than the industrial process (which I suspect contributes mightily to the bacteria problem) this _sort_ of thing is probably fairly common in traditional societies, where boiled down unpleasant parts of animals are turned into food- haladetz in Russia is an (unappealing, to me) example.

(I should say that I don't much eat this stuff, but that's mostly because I don't like how it tastes, rather than anything else.)

Russell Arben Fox said...

Matt, I agree that this "sort" of thing has been around as long as animal husbandry of one type or another has existed, particularly is societies with mostly subsistence or self-sustaining economies, for whom specialization and trade in meat was either out of the question or considered unnecessary. And the stuff they come up with is, I think, actually often tasty (ever tried scrapple?). But you can't invoke "the industrial process" as just a minor point of difference, responsible for introducing bacteria; it's a huge difference, not the least reason for which being that personally handled animals that the butcher is working down to the last scrap of meat has a good chance of being tossed when things look bad. You're not very likely to have that when you have process with thousands of chickens being stunned, sliced, and boiled every hour.

Matt said...

Well, I wouldn't romanticize what more traditional butchers would or wouldn't sell to people, but my comment was just about the part about not wanting your daughters to eat beaks and eyes. I'm not crazy about some of the stuff that beaks and eyes and the like get made into though it's actually in lots of things (gelatin, for example), and lots of traditional foods, so there's no special worry about that.