TV news loves a health scare. Think deadly Tylenol. Killer tomatoes. Mad Cow Disease. Alar in apples. And lots more. Sometimes, as with Tylenol, they are legit and important. Other times, like Alar, they are entirely bogus. Yet every time, the template is the same. Someone gets sick and the ravenous media tear at the company or industry for not being safe. This time, however, ABC News has turned that idea on its head in its usual quest for tabloid headlines. Its going after a company, Beef Products, Inc., for making a product that's not only already safe, it's one weve all been eating for years. But that hasn't stopped ABC and reporter Jim Avila. The network's news division has decided to declare open war on beef. So far, theyre winning. In a series of 10 stories in just about two weeks, ABC has so demonized the company and its products that Safeway, SUPERVALU and Food Lion just stopped buying it. Ditto Kroger and Stop & Shop. The meat, often called "lean finely textured beef, is made up of beef that is just harder to get at, so the meat isnt lost. Its treated to get rid of the fat and included with the rest of the ground beef. The USDA declares it healthy, but it is less expensive. As an added bonus, it is treated tiny amounts of ammonium hydroxide to make it safer to eat. How ABC News Smeared A Stellar Company With 'pink Slime' | Fox News And here's what an MD said about pink slime, the ingredient FOX NEWS is defending in it's "news" piece. In a study titled "Fast food hamburgers: what are we really eating?" pathologists at the Cleveland Clinic dissected burgers from eight different fast food chains to find out what was, or wasn't, inside. Published in the Annals of Diagnostic Pathology, the paper begins with "Most consumers presume that the hamburger they eat is composed primarily of meat." But what did they find? Similar to a previous dissection they had performed on hot dogs, the researchers discovered waste and by-products including connective tissue, nerve tissue, cartilage, bone, and in a quarter of the samples, Sarcocystis parasites. But surely these "fillers" were the minority, right? Unfortunately not. After crunching the numbers, the researchers found that the amount of actual meat (muscle flesh) in the burgers ranged from 2.1 percent to 14.8 percent. Instead of fries, perhaps fast food cashiers should be asking, "Do you want meat with that?" In addition to reducing quality, cutting corners also tends to reduce safety, which is why the pink slime in question is injected with ammonia hydroxide: to kill the Salmonella and E. coli (read: fecal matter) that it's often contaminated with. Instead of addressing the contamination issue itself, the meat industry employs a cheap "technofix" to turn what was once considered waste into slimy profits. So what do the meat pushers do when cheap chemicals won't do the trick, and their products leave the processing plant contaminated with fecal bacteria? Do they shut down the plant? Order a recall? No. They shift responsibility onto the consumer. "Raw meats are not idiot-proof," a USDA poultry microbiologist said. "They can be mishandled and when they are, it's like handling a hand grenade. If you pull the pin, somebody's going to get hurt." In other words, if you get sick from contaminated meat, it's your fault. But just how often is meat contaminated? This month the CDC released their latest national meat survey in response to this question. They tested more than 5,000 samples of retail meat products straight off the shelves in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania. What they found could hardly have been more disturbing: 90 percent of pork chops, ground beef and ground turkey, and 95 percent of chicken breasts, were contaminated with fecal bacteria. No wonder an Alabama poultry science professor was quoted in a meat industry journal as saying, "it's too expensive not to sell salmonella-positive chicken." Michael Greger, M.D.: Pink Slime: All About the Green So Fox News tells you to eat the filler treated with chemicals and filled with fecal matter and says that the chemicals used to kill the SHIT that's in it, is a BONUS. Wow. You guys really watch this stuff and BELIEVE what they tell you? I don't know about you, but I'd rather not be told it's OK to eat SHIT.