In response to growing concern among Houston parents regarding the use of Lean Beef Trimmings, aka “pink slime,” in school food ground beef, Houston ISD released today the following statement:
Alll HISD ground beef suppliers have confirmed this week that they do not use lean finely textured beef.
Houston Independent School District officials contacted the suppliers soon after concerns were raised about lean finely textured beef, also known as pink slime. As of Wednesday afternoon, each vendor had supplied HISD with written documentation confirming they have not sent the district any of the controversial products. In addition, HISD officials have inspected about $800,000 worth of frozen ground beef stored at the district’s food services facility and confirmed it does not contain lean finely textured beef.
In the future, HISD will decline to purchase any products that contain lean finely textured beef.
As of today, sixteen days later, there are close to one-quarter of a million signatures in support of the petition. On the ninth day of the petition, USDA announced that it would change its policy and allow districts to opt out of purchasing beef containing LBT. Since then, school districts around the country have either indicated that they will no longer purchase beef with the cheap filler or they have affirmed that they were not using LBT in the first place.
As of yesterday, many of the largest supermarket chains in the country have disavowed use of LBT. The chains include Safeway (the country’s second largest, after Kroger), Food Lion and Supervalu (the third largest, operating Acme, Albertsons, Cub Foods, Farm Fresh, Hornbacher’s, Jewel-Osco, Lucky, Shaw’s/Star Market, Shop ‘n Save and Shoppers Food & Pharmacy). Walmart and Sam’s Club stores will begin offering beef without LBT, while Kroger has issued a statement regarding which of its ground beef offerings are free of LBT and will provide this information to its meat departments.