On June 6, 2013, the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) of the USDA proposed a rule requiring the labeling of mechanically tenderized beef products. Under the proposed rule, labels would state that the product is mechanically tenderized and include the recommended end cooking temperature for that product. Recent food-borne illness outbreaks spurred the development of the new rule, as studies show that during the tenderizing process, harmful bacteria is pushed into the center of the beef product. The harmful bacteria then survives the cooking process because consumers are unaware they must cook to a greater degree of doneness than when cooking a non-mechanically tenderized product. The proposed rule was published in the Federal Register today, June 10, 2013, for a 60 day comment period.
For additional information, please visit the USDA FSIS website.
Written By Sarah Doyle - Research Assistant
Penn State Law - Agricultural Law Center
June 10, 2013