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Gee Whillickers

Ground Beef rejected by McDonalds and Taco Bell - But Good Enough For School Lunches!

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Those of us who write stories with teens in them have almost all done it. The scene in the school lunchroom where the kids joke about how awful their school provided lunches are. Well, it turns out there's more than a bit of truth to this.

Ammonia treated meat, rejected by Burger King, McDonalds, Taco Bell, and others as utterly below their standards was deemed just fine for schools. Seven million pounds were purchased to make into school hamburgers. Folks, this stuff isn't even ground beef. It's officially termed "Lean Beef Trimmings." Which means, apparently, scraps, cow connective tissue, and other trimmings mushed together, ground up, then heavily treated with ammonia to kill all the nasty bacteria.

Yum. Food to learn by.

Here's the article:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/05/pink-slime-for-school-lun_n_1322325.html?ref=education

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We complained that the food at our elementary school wasn't fit for rats and they told us to shut up.

When I was in eighth grade, the woman in charge of the elementary school was arrested for embezzling hundreds of thousands over many years.

Nobody listened to the kids until one of the parents actually showed up, tried the food and started asking questions.

We really weren't kidding when we called it mystery meat. The road kill was so fresh, it still had gravel in it.

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When I was in intermediate school we always joked that we were eating kangaroo (sorry about that, those of you from Oz). By the time I got to high school they were starting a "healthy eating" program with salads and real chicken (grilled, not fried) and beef stew that was actually edible and excellent soups. They had to do something. We had an open campus, and there was a Whole Foods market right next to the campus theat had lots of food that was a little expensive but tasted good, and they took a lot of business away from the cafeteria.

Colin :icon_geek:

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No problem Colin. Kangaroo meat is sold here for human consumption. I became a vegetarian before I had a chance to try it, but I am told it is quite tasty and does not taste like Vegemite.

My own high school 'tuck-shop' (cafeteria) sold commercial meat pies, pasties and sausage rolls. Hamburgers weren't available then in Adelaide. We were allowed to go across the street from the primary school to get fish and chips, or frozen oranges, lots of candy bars, and coca cola. I remember there was a continental bakery that made French and German cream cakes in the shapes of swans, and upside down shortbread mushrooms filled with butter-cream and sprinkled with cinnamon. There were also balls of puff pastry filled with fresh whipped cream, real cream, not the thickened flour and milk they sell today.

These days there are a few cake shops left, but most of their cakes all taste the same, no flavour at all. Plastic food for plastic people.

We have a German baker at the local mall and he manages to make decent cakes and pastries.

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One of the advantages of growing up in small-town agricultural America was that our school cafeteria was staffed by local ladies and was supplied by local produce and farm production. The food on offer tasted just like what we got at home, and the only thing supplied by the "government" was warm milk in cardboard cartons. Junk food was unknown in those olden days.

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Ahh, school lunch...yeah, I still poke fun at them in my stories. During most of my school years I took a bag lunch and considered myself one of the lucky ones. I still consider that McDonalds serves mystery meat and I will not eat there, although the coffee has become acceptable.

I recall a television interview from several years ago where the warden of the local prison bragged about feeding the inmates with a cost factor of $1.50 a day. Can you imagine what those poor bastards must have to eat?

Now as for you, Des...with all those sugary cakes and candies available...how did you manage to stay so svelte? :icon_thumleft:

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I understand Des has his own private source of protein.

Of course, at their age, I don't know how many times a week it's available.

C

We have a fast food service line for the protein source. Open 24/7. Please form two lines, one at my front and one behind me.

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Last year, the food service at my school was miserable. Undercooked chicken, spoiled milk, and sometimes even bread-and-water were on the menu. Now, I'm in a high-poverty area, so the kids all get breakfast and lunch free of charge...but for a lot of them, those were the ONLY meals they got. "If you don't like it, pack a lunch" was not an option.

My 5th graders formed a student union, passed around a petition, and staged a boycot. There MAY have been certain...faculty advisors...pulling the strings, but I won't confirm that. :wink:

Now the food is pretty decent. On par with other school lunches, at least.

Change can happen.

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