There is an interesting lawsuit out of Alabama where lawyers have filed a class action against Taco Bell over its claim to serve “beef” in its dishes. In fact, the lawsuit alleges, Taco Bell is serving what are called “beef extenders” and not actual beef as defined by the U.S. government.
Taco Bell Corporation spokesman Rob Poetsch responded by saying that “Taco Bell prides itself on serving high quality Mexican inspired food with great value. We’re happy that the millions of customers we serve every week agree. We deny our advertising is misleading in any way and we intend to vigorously defend the suit.” That is an interesting statement. It does not appear to deny that it is serving marginal beef products but that the company never really promised anything more than it serves. Presumably, if the company issued a statement that it was in fact serving “beef” in response to this lawsuit, it could be cited as part of the alleged effort to deceive in advertising (assuming they are not serving “beef” as defined by federal law).
The class action alleges the company is serving what is referred to as “taco meat filling, which is comprised mainly of “extenders” and other non-meat substances, including wheat oats, soy lecithin, maltodrextrin, anti-dusting agent, autolyzed yeast extract, modified corn starch and sodium phosphate as well as beef and seasonings. Of course, the company could claim that it is the anti-dusting agents and maltrodrexin that gives it that “high quality Mexican inspired food” taste but it would not actually have most Americans “running to the border.”
The lawsuit alleges that only 36% of what the company serves customers is properly classified as meat.
What is anti-dusting agent, you ask?
Well, I have tried to find out. Assuming this is the same product, one manufacturer indicates that it is helpful in a grinding process:
It is advisable to use as little quantity of Antidusting Agent (“Dedusting BM”) as possible since excessive amount may cause blending problem in subsequent process. The concentrated dye and diluents are mixed together. Then slowly spray the required percentage of Antidusting Agent (“Dedusting BM”) over an hour, continue mixing for additional 1 To 2 hrs. The purpose is to reduce dusting tendency during grinding and to keep manufacturing atmosphere free of dyestuff contamination.
Oils appear used for anti-dusting operation, particularly soybean oil.
As for maltodextrin, it is a polysaccharide that is used as a food additive — a white powder derived from either corn or potatoes.
Update: Greg Creed, president of Taco Bell, has issued this statement:
47 thoughts on “Would You Like Salsa With Your Anti-Dusting Agent? Taco Bell Sued Over Allegedly Serving Non-Beef in Tacos”
“….fast-food giants McDonald’s, Burger King, and Taco Bell announced they will no longer use a controversial beef product produced by food behemoth Beef Products Inc. (BPI). At one time, the ammoniated beef product – beef trimmings known in the industry as ‘pink slime’ – could be found in approximately 80 percent of the hamburgers consumed in the United States, including those served at fast-food restaurants and through the national school lunch program. ”
In the waning days of 2011, fast-food giants McDonald’s, Burger King, and Taco Bell announced they will no longer use a controversial beef product produced by food behemoth Beef Products Inc. (BPI). At one time, the ammoniated beef product – beef trimmings known in the industry as ‘pink slime’ – could be found in approximately 80 percent of the hamburgers consumed in the United States, including those served at fast-food restaurants and through the national school lunch program. While some media outlets raised public awareness regarding potential dangers associated with the product, the Government Accountability Project (GAP) also recognizes the role of the BPI whistleblower who reported the company’s practices.
Kit Foshee, BPI Whistleblower, is a former Corporate Quality Assurance Manager at BPI, the nation’s leading producer of “lean boneless beef.” He says he was terminated for refusing to participate in his company’s alleged knowing misrepresentation of microbial data to the USDA and alleged false claims made to customers about the product’s safety. (end of excerpt)
Right now I’m actually anti-Taco Bell. I had a horrible experience tonight with my local one. I even wrote a ranting blog post if anyone cares to read it:
flipin idiots crazy people
this is crazy taco bell is making a serious fight on the meat products they serve i find it stupid that these idiots will just stop getting these products and serve real meat and i really like their crunchwrap now because this information my family is not going to eat there ever again even a crybaby wants it i hate taco bell
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