New Orleans, LA, October 24, 2002—The American Meat Institute (AMI) Board of Directors today voted to urge the U.S. Department of Agriculture to (USDA) establish a pilot program for purchasing irradiated ground beef in the School Lunch commodity beef purchasing program. The Board made its decision during the Annual Business Meeting held at AMI’s Annual Convention and Innovation Showcase in New Orleans, LA.
As a result of the decision, AMI
will follow up with a letter to USDA urging
“Groups like the American
Medical Association and the World Health
Organization have long endorsed irradiation for
meat products and the technology is used in
nearly 40 countries around the world.
Irradiation provides an extra margin of safety
along with the many technologies already in use
by the industry,” said AMI President and CEO
J. Patrick Boyle.
“It’s time for
USDA to acknowledge the food safety benefits of
this technology and begin purchasing irradiated
ground beef products for the nation’s school
The Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) approved the use of
irradiation for use on single ingredient raw
products in 1999. USDA issued a rule
permitting it use in February 2000.
Many restaurants and meat companies are
offering irradiated products to consumers. IN
AMI’s view, these same products should be
provided through the school lunch program.
AMI represents the interests of packers
and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal and
turkey products and their suppliers throughout
North America. Together, AMI's members
produce 95 percent of the beef, pork, lamb
and veal products and 70 percent of the
products in the U.S. Headquartered
in Washington, DC, the Institute provides
legislative, regulatory, public relations,
technical, scientific and educational services
to the industry. Its affiliate, the AMI
Foundation, is a separate 501(c)3 organization
that conducts research, education and
information projects for the industry.
AMI BOARD VOTES TO URGE USDA TO APPROVE IRRADIATED PRODUCT FOR SCHOOL LUNCH PROGRAMThursday, October 24, 2002
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