straight from the ranch, no microwaving included.
The biggest news in the beef industry over the past several months has
been the push to allow beef processing facilities to use the process of
irradiation on beef to create a safe product for the consumer. With the promise
that it will reduce the chance of more dangerous E. coli being present in the
end product offered to the consumer.
CCA submits request for approval of beef
irradiation to Health Canada
industry asks Ottawa to approve use of irradiation
industry asking Ottawa to approve irradiation to kill dangerous E. coli
What is comes down to is whether or not
you as the consumer want to eat food that is irradiated and if you think it is
the appropriate step to accomplish a safe product.
irradiation is the process of exposing food to a controlled amount of energy
called "ionizing radiation." There are three different types of
radiation allowed: Gamma rays, X-rays and electron beam radiation.”
possible for irradiated food to become contaminated after it has been treated.
For this reason, proper storage, handling and cooking are very important. So is
there any guarantee that your irradiated beef won’t become contaminated again
before it reaches you, possibly by being tenderized before being sold to you.
The tenderizing process was linked to one of the major E. coli recalls in 2012.
The whole problem that is leading to E.coli out breaks is the unsafe and rushed
procedures in the production process.
Would it maybe be better to focus more on the butchering process itself
that takes place in these huge processing facilities that see hundreds of
animals pass through per hour and thousands per day. While irradiation might
provide the customer with a sense of safety if is approved by health Canada, it
is unlikely to change the ability of the large packers and processors to meet
the current health standards for beef processing. It is similar to painting
your broken car before you sell it, makes it look nice but doesn’t fix the
parts that are missing in the engine.
Patricia Whisnant, a graduate of the University of Tennessee College Of
Veterinary Medicine (1981) was quoted
saying “Irradiation may provide an
excuse not to tackle the real sources and practices responsible for the
contamination of beef…mainly the filth in the confined environment of the
feedlot and the fecal contamination that occurs in the high speed slaughter
facility.” As Whisnant further states “Our efforts in the meat industry
should be aimed at removing the filth from the source, not just making cow
manure safer to eat ” 1
In the end it comes down to what you want to
eat, beef irradiation has been shown to have very little effect on the
nutritional level of beef2, it can in some cases change the flavour
but there have not been other serious
side effects realized. We are just here to present some ideas and facts in the
end it is still your choice.