ex-Detroiter here, granddaughter and great-niece of a butcher and certain meatpacker's labor union leader (respectively). Let me tell you something about the quality of your Detroit Coney:
*** Only Michigan hotdogs are required to be made of all skeletal meat. *** Yes, you read that right. If you're eating any other dog, you're eating lips-n-a$$holes. So have a Coney at Coney Dog, and know your meat!
PS: If you're worried about slopping chili on your tie, fork and knife it. This is how Detroiters eat their coneys. Never with their hands. We are civilized!
8873 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
My friend, who is from Michigan, told me that Michigan has meat (only hot dog?) laws that are much stricter than most other states. I did not go into detail with him, so I am not sure exactly how, but I thought it was interesting and plan on following up and getting more details on this.
Yes, I was raised to only eat Michigan meat..... lol. I remember going to the Hygrade's plant (Ball Park Franks) as a kid, and watching the sides of beef and pork swinging along the line and being cut by hand. The hunks of meat were ground up and shaped into hotdogs. :) I am sure there is something official on the books, but from the tales I was told as a kid, my great uncle was disgusted by the Chicago meat practices ("The Jungle," Upton Sinclair, anyone?). He worked with other labor leaders in Detroit (namely, Jimmy Hoffa) in forming better working conditions for the butchers/meat packers in plants and supermarkets, and in doing so, pushed for more stringent health standards of sausages and hotdogs, and Michigan was the only state to really see this through. So you can thank and support your unions for decent hotdogs!
I found this with a quick google search:
"Mechanically separated beef is considered inedible and is prohibited in their hotdogs or any other processed meat product they produce. Stick to these Michigan dogs for good eats!
Also, the finished products may not contain more than 30% fat or no more than 10% water. Up to 3.5% non-meat binders and extenders (such as nonfat dry milk, cereal, or dried whole milk) or 2% isolated soy protein may be used, but must be shown in the ingredients statement on the product's label by its common name."
Mechanically separated meat is beyond disgusting. I used to be a fan of Trader Joe's stuffed peppers with ground turkey and brown rice. A friend told me to take a close look at the label. Uggh. The "turkey" was described as "mechanically separated." Damn, I really loved those stuffed peppers. Never ate them again after learning what "mechanically separated" turkey is. Saw a video of the process. Horrible.
As a fellow Wolverine I thank you for your post. It is kind of shocking how much better Michigan meat is. Just returned from a trip to Ann Arbor. The butcher shop in Kerrytown Markets has local, dry-aged, organic rib-eye for 9.99/lb. Sigh. I wish we could get that here.