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May 12, 2008 10:08 PM

Mechanically Separated Chicken

I love this ingredient, the first in a slim jim. Doesn't that just make you want to eat one. What exactly is this process ??

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  1. I have always imagined it to be a robot repeatedly slamming a chicken carcass (held by the feet) against a wire mesh wall, flailing the meat from the bones. I'll be a little disappointed to learn the process is somehow less...uh...compelling.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ricepad

      I have visions of some sort of centrifuge.....what ends up stuck to the sides is put back into play in all forms of yummy snack/fast/canned......foods

    2. It's a very legitimate way that the industrial food processors use to harvest the last remaining pieces of meat clinging to the bone. The product usually ends up in various emulsified meats. Any cheap hot dog or bologna that reads "chicken" uses it.

      Lest we despair that its presence in our food supply puts us only one step away from Soylent Green, let's admit that there are times when we are making a chicken stock and we wish that there were time-efficient ways of grabbing every bit of goodness from the various parts of the carcass. Factories with 1000's of carcasses do it well, using screw drives, sieves if various mesh size, and pressure.

      Here's how they do it:

      With 6 billion plus and counting, there is room on the planet for this product. There is no reason (apart from the vegetarian argument) to say it does not have a place in the food supply system, and there is every reason to decide if you want it on your own table or not.

      1. I don't eat anything with mechanically separated meat. This is when bone and spinal cord particles can be mixed in with the meat since a machine is doing the "picking."

        1. Thanks for the reply, now I will look at Slim Jims a little different. I guess I was thinking a more along the lines of ricepad's version, now that the humor is taken out of it I am not so sure I am interested.

          1. Mechanically Separated Chicken

            i loved these guys.their first cd is great! ;-) i used to see them at cbgb's.