Facts and Frequently Asked Questions About Lean, Finely-Textured Beef
USDA inspection of beef grinding operation.
view on EDIS



How to Cite

Carr, Chad, Dwain Johnson, Joel Brendemuhl, and Larry Eubanks. 2012. “Facts and Frequently Asked Questions About Lean, Finely-Textured Beef: AN281/AN281, 7/2012”. EDIS 2012 (7). Gainesville, FL. https://doi.org/10.32473/edis-an281-2012.


Two very similar finely textured beef products available commercially and produced from slightly different patented processes have received an increased amount of media attention recently, where they have been referred to as “pink slime.” This 4-page fact sheet is intended to answer some of the consumer questions that have arisen as a result of this increased attention. Written by Chad Carr, Dwain Johnson, Joel Brendemuhl, and Larry Eubanks, and published by the UF Department of Animal Science, July 2012.

AN281/AN281: Facts and Frequently Asked Questions About Lean, Finely-Textured Beef (ufl.edu)

view on EDIS


Beattie, S. 2007. A brief statement of the use of ammonium compounds in food processing: Nutriphysiological perspectives. Accessed at http://www.beefproducts.com/ISU-Ammonium.pdf on July 23, 2012.

Berry, B. W., W. H. Marshall, and E. J. Koch. 1981. Cooking and chemical properties of raw and precooked flaked and ground beef patties cooked from the frozen state. J. Food Sci. 46:856-59. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2621.1981.tb15365.x

Bottemiller, H. April 2, 2012. Slimegate: Should USDA require labeling for LFTB? Food Safety News. Accessed at http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/04/slimegate-should-usda-require-labeling-for-lftb/ on July 23, 2012.

Cargill Meat Solutions, D. L. Schaefer, R. M. James, and M. E. Rempe. 1995. U.S. Patent No. 5725897. Washington, DC: US Patent and Trademark Office.

Christensen, L. M. 2012. Evaluation of textural properties of cooked beef batters. MS thesis-California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo, CA. Accessed at http://digitalcommons.calpoly.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1769&context=theses on July 23, 2012.

Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Washington, DC: US Food and Drug Administration, cited by USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) in Compliance Guide on the Determination of Processing Aids (2008). Accessed at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/pdf/determination_of_processing_aids.pdf on July 23, 2012.

FDA (US Food and Drug Administration). 2006. Ammonium hydroxide. Washington, D.C. Accessed at http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/fcn/fcnDetailNavigation.cfm?rpt=scogsListing&id=27 on July 23, 2012.

Forrest, J. C., E. D. Aberle, H. B. Hedrick, M. D. Judge, and R. A. Merkel. 1975. Principles of Meat Science, 2nd Edition. New York: Freeman and Company.

He, Y. and J. G. Sebranek. 1996. Frankfurter with lean finely textured tissue as affected by ingredients. J. Food Sci. 61:1275-79. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2621.1996.tb10978.x

Hobbs, M. 2012. Personal Communication. January 16, 2012. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139176651.002

Moon, C. T., J. W. Yancey, J. K. Apple, J. J. Hollenbeck, T. M. Johnson, and A. R. Winters. 2012. Lean beef trim improved fresh and cooked quality characteristics of ground beef patties. University of Arkansas Gamma Sigma Delta Society. Accessed at http://newswire.uark.edu/article.aspx?id=17999 on July 23, 2012.

Niebuhr S. E and J. S. Dickson. 2003. Impact of pH enhancement on populations of Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes, and Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Boneless Lean Beef Trimmings. J. Food Protection 66:874-77. https://doi.org/10.4315/0362-028X-66.5.874

Roth, E. 1980. U.S. Patent No. 4192899. Washington, DC. U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Rudman, D., R. B. Smith, A. Salam, W. D. Warren, J. T. Galambos, and J. Wegner. 1973. Ammonia content of food. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 26:487-90. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/26.5.487

South Dakota Dept. of Agriculture. 2012. Lean, finely-textured beef fact sheet. Accessed at http://sdda.sd.gov/LFTB%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf on July 23, 2012.

USDA-FSIS. 2004. FSIS Directive 10,010.1 Rev. 3: Verification activities for Escherichia coli O157:H7 in raw beef products. Washington, DC. Accessed at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FSISDirectives/10010.1Rev3.pdf on July 23, 2012.

USDA-FSIS. 2006. Timeline of events related to E. coli O157:H7. Washington, DC. Accessed at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/PDF/Ecoli_O157_Timeline.pdf.

USDA-FSIS. 2012. FSIS verification testing for non-O157 Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (non-O157 STEC) under MT60, MT52, and MT53 sampling programs. Washington, DC. Accessed at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FSISNotices/40-12.pdf on July 23, 2012.

WHO (World Health Organization). 1986. Environmental Health Criteria 54: Ammonia. Geneva.