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Former BPI Employee Plans to File Suit Over LFTB Backlash

"Pink Slime" heading back into the news.

A former Beef Products Inc employee plans to file a civil lawsuit in response to the national frenzy over lean finely textured beef (LFTB), now widely known to consumers as pink slime.

Sioux City, Iowa-based Rauttnee Publishing Company announced it will hold a press conference on Tuesday to detail the suit to be filed by former BPI Environmental Health and Safety Officer Bruce Smith.

The company will be handing out copies of the lawsuit as well as copies of Smith’s new book, titled “Pink Slime Ate My Job.” According to an online business profile, Rauttnee Publishing Company was launched by Smith in 2004.

A press release said the lawsuit would be against “national news broadcasting company” and “other prominent individuals” involved in the controversy.

The high profile LFTB controversy in the Spring resulted in the shutdown of three BPI plants, in in Iowa, Kansas and Texas, and layoffs at a plant in South Sioux City, Nebraska.

Iowa congressman Steve King (R), who has called for congressional hearings on the LFTB media storm, told KTIV he thinks litigation may be a good idea.

“If there is a way to go through this in litigation and get to the bottom of this — especially if it was a willful strategy that unfolded — if that trail can be discovered through litigation then, by all means, go forward,” said King.

A detailed timeline of the LFTB controversy can be found here.

© Food Safety News
  • Nothing more than a publicity stunt. Has no chance of success, but notice that the guy is coming out with a book at the same time?
    And who would buy a book with that title?

  • Fran

    Not a “LFTB Backlash” so much as a pink slime smear. A carefully planned and executed smear fomenting mass hysteria resulting in hundreds of lower middle class families being thrown out of work. This was the intentional success LFTB fearmongers can gloat over. A class action suit should be filed by former BPI employees who were thrown out of work by this smear. They could probably use some financial relief about now. Pretty difficult to find work these days.

  • Nat

    @Fran,
    Pink slime smear is right. Would you care for some on your burger bun? It’s pretty difficult for tobacco workers and cigarette company execs to find work these days, but would you push cigarettes on our kids just to keep them employed?
    The fact that you think that our kids (and their parents) deserve to eat highly processed, ammonia-infused, mechanically separated antibiotic-treated and hormone-injected factory farmed beef is testimony to your ignorance. If you want to eat this garbage, great, go for it. But it’s absolutely our right to know what’s in our food, and since our government doesn’t do its job, it’s up to ordinary citizens and media to do its policing. Justifying and encouraging a lawsuit because the truth has finally come out- it is unconscionable.

  • NJ

    Clearly, the beef industry and BPI are behind this lawsuit even though it is being touted as part of a book introduction (great way to go for the money Mr. Smith — write a book about pink slime and simultaneously sue the media for reporting on it.) The message — if the media or blogging community criticizes the food system or its products, and the public agrees, we will sue you.
    This lawsuit has as much merit as the beef industry’s lawsuit against Oprah Winfrey. And we all know how that turned out.
    Note to meat industry. Examine your flawed processes and lack of transparency instead of attacking the media which has simply reported on them. People are out of work because of your mistakes and lack of candor. Suing the media will not make consumers purchase LFTB. Being transparent, honest and forthright will.

  • If I remember correctly, Bill Marler promised to defend anyone who is sued because of their opinion on this adulterated beef product.

  • That would be a yes.

  • Cindy Bradley

    Cool, Bill, go get ’em!

  • Excellent.

  • Lou

    For all you lamenters pining away for pink slime in your burgers — make your own!
    Here’s how: Buy up cutting floor scraps. Grind finely. Treat with plenty of ammonia to kill (hopefully all of) the virulent bacteria, spin mightily (using high speed spin cycle in your washing machine?), add to other burger composed from 100’s of cows, cook well-well-well done. Use plenty of catsup. Yum!

  • I don’t think people are pining away for “pink slime”. What the issue should be is how food items are deemed safe and how consumers are informed. Deeming something unsafe based on emotion and uninformed opinion is just as bad as claiming it’s safe based on these scientific studies all done inside our labs without 3rd party review. Both can get people to falsely believe something is what it actually isn’t.
    An example of the emotional spin would be to try and make the pink slime product out to have more bacteria than other meat from the cow because they add ammonia. The point of adding ammonia is an added safety step for the pre-existing condition of bacterial contaminants. This is why we recommend ground beef be cooked to 160 degrees, same reason, higher probability of pathogens.
    And the tobacco companies for years had people believing there was no downside to smoking, they even had studies.
    It’s wonderful that people are concerned about what is happening to their food and it can be emotional as food tends to be associated with emotional events etc. But when talking about food safety one has to keep an open mind, look at all the facts. This is where critical thinking takes a big part to come to an informed, reasoned, conclusion, based on facts over emotion.
    Should anything or anyone be accused, brought to trial, and convicted based only on emotion and half truths?
    I would rather not have the product in my food, and there are probably a lot more products I wouldn’t want in my food. I do know that there isn’t any evidence of health issues, not to say there can’t be, but not likely.

  • I know it is long since public domain at this point; also that it has been dubbed the most duplicated image in print, but I wish that Hokusai or his heirs could sue this idiot for such an absurd use of The Great Wave off Kanagawa.