Mechanically Separated Chicken for Food?-Truth!

 

 

 

bullet Summary of the eRumor
An email message alerting readers to the existence of mechanically separated meats such as chicken and turkey.  
The writer says it is a carcass stripped of everything except tissue, immature sex glands, and bone and asks, "Shouldn't consumers be made aware of what mechanically separated chicken is?"
bullet The Truth
According to the U.S.Food Safety and Inspection Service of the Department of Agriculture, mechanically separated meets are the real thing and are safe.  
Very simply, mechanical separation is a way of getting every last piece of meat from the bone of a chicken, turkey, or other food animal. 
Bones with edible meat attached are forced under high pressure through a device that separates the bone from the meat.  
It's a process that's been used since the 1960's and for a variety of popular products.  
A statement from the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service says mechanically separated products are "safe, wholesome, nutritious, and useful in providing consumers with the wide variety of economical meat and poultry products."
We have not been able to find any reference to the carcass specifically having "immature sex glands."
A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:

Do you know what MECHANICALLY SEPARATED CHICKEN (or mechanically separated turkey, or pork) is? You may think it is just chicken that is separated mechanically, right? NOPE! It is actually the stripped carcass of the bird. Stripped as in all meat has been removed and the only thing left is the tissue, immature sex glands and bone. They take this carcass and, at a high temperature, push it through a sieve. This creates a gray past that then can be used in foods. I was appalled to learn this. I was even more appalled when I learned it is found in most pantries. For example, CAMPBELL'S CREAM OF CHICKEN, most frozen meatballs, some deli meats, just about all chicken and turkey franks, turkey bacon etc. (EDITOR'S NOTE: It is also a major component of one of my favorite comfort foods: Slim Jims.) My question: why would companies like Campbell's be using mechanically separated chicken in Cream of Chicken soup? It doesn't contain an enormous amount of chicken that Campbell's feel they need to cut corners. And shouldn't consumers be made aware of what mechanically separated chicken is? Maybe you can help get the word out. I think you will surprise MANY of your readers. (ediets.com article)