Kids Used to Additives, Pink Slime Complain That Real Burgers Don't "Taste Right"

Virginia schools stopped serving all-beef burgers after students complained.

Photo Credit: (Credit: John Gough/Shutterstock)

There was something weird about the burgers being sold in cafeterias this year. Students in the Farifax, Virginia school district said they “didn’t look or taste right.”

The problem, according to a school board member, was probably that the new, all-beef patties didn’t contain caramel coloring.

After announcing last spring that they were getting rid of patties made with pink slime, the school system recently regressed back to an additive-rich burger, reports the Washington Post. The decision was driven mainly by student complaints.

According to the Post, the newest burgers don’t contain pink slime, but they do feature a full 26 ingredients:

According to nutritional information, the new patties contain caramel coloring and other tongue-twisting additives and preservatives. Stored in freezers, the patties can last up to 12 months.

“If you look at a hamburger package and you can’t read the ingredients because you need a dictionary to understand it, something’s wrong,” [co-founder and president of Farifx-based advocacy group Real Food for Kids JoAnne] Hammermaster said.

To the students, apparently, lab-concocted meat is just more “natural.”


Lindsay Abrams is a staff writer at Salon, reporting on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email [email protected].

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