Meat&Poultry - June 2013 - (Page 14)

Washington by bERNARD SHIRE 5/9 What’s in a name? -17 I f you’re a meat customer but don’t for cuts of beef and pork have been in- will be labeled a T-bone, whether it’s know a rump roast from a pork troduced. These titles include easier beef or pork. And sirloin steak used to and simplified names, but also detailed be named beef-loin top-sirloin steak, butt, help is on the way. The American meat industry is boneless. Now it will be called: sirloin cooking guidelines and instructions. steak. That makes sense! fusing labeling system that has been For example, what was once labeled as For many industry planners, the used for more than 40 years to name “pork butt,” which by the way comes change to start making things easier cuts of pork, beef, lamb and veal. Un- from the shoulder, will now be called to understand in the world of beef and fortunately, the meat-naming system a “Boston roast” and be described to pork comes just in time because there’s – known as the Uniform Retail Meat consumers as a bone-in pork shoul- a great deal of interest in food in this Identification Standards – wasn’t de- der. Some have questioned if this is, country, albeit entertainment-based signed to help consumers at all. It was /24 descriptions of the meat itself – and updating what was an old and con- indeed an improvement. Is Boston interest more than anything else. Pro- set up for the demands of butchers and gramming focused on instructing people how to make food has declined. trying to find the right cut of meat to cook at home. What the meat industry realized is that on top of other PR problems, ignorance and confusion about the types of meats available in Photo courtesy of National Pork Board and Beef Checkoff meat retailers and not for customers And knowledge about food and how to cook continues to wane. While a lot of consumers talk about shopping at farmers markets, the processed-food industry is skyrocketing. But the meat industry has taken it upon itself to try and remove some of the confusion that surrounds cuts of meat, what they’re called, and how they’re labeled. Part of the problem for this confusion has been that meat-label titles and the labels themselves are regulated by the USDA. And while the Uniform Retail Standards are vol- New labeling system necessarily more descriptive? What untary, not compulsory, most retail- does “bone-in pork shoulder” mean store counters doesn’t help meat sales. ers use it. Stores not wanting to use to the consumer? the Uniform Retail Standards sys- Players in the industry, including the The real problem is customers tem must design alternative labels for National Pork Board and the National didn’t necessarily understand the USDA approval or use a different set Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s Check- names being used for many years. As of labels also approved by Uncle Sam. off Program, as well as federal officials a result, consumers would shy away While butchers and meat retailers from the US Dept. of Agriculture, from using products whose names or understood the old terms, consumers conducted consumer research and for- labels they didn’t understand. To that didn’t and many still won’t. Consum- mulated, after several years of work, a end, the pork and beef industry has ers want to know what the piece of new and updated meat-labeling sys- been working with USDA officials to meat is and how to cook it so it will be tem. The new labeling protocol was make some major changes in labeling pleasing to them and their families. ■ rolled out in retail stores just in time and titles. They include using similar for the 2013 grilling season. or identical names across species lines. More than 350 new labeling titles 14 For example, a bone-in loin cut Bernard Shire is a contributing editor based in Lancaster, Pa. He also works as a food safety consultant for Shire & Associates LLC. • Meat&Poultry • June 2013 • 014_MP_June13_Washington.indd 14 6/5/2013 3:09:40 PM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat&Poultry - June 2013

Meat&Poultry - June 2013
Table of Contents
Commentary - Now, we're cookin'
Business Notes - China’s Shuanghui makes bid for Smithfield
JBS posts $112.8M in Q1 earnings
COOL opponents vow to press on
Triumph Foods to expand pork facility
Hormel income dips on Jennie-O results, acquisitions
Washington - What’s in a name?
BBQ Report - Low & slow is red hot
BBQ Report - Carnivorous curriculum
Packaging Solutions - Consistency counts
Meat Processing Operations & Engineering - Small but savvy
Rooted in meat
Pushing pests out
Sanitation Tips - Usual suspects
CEO Series - Fit to lead
Ingredient Solutions - Meat makeover
Meat Perspectives - HAACP and more
From the Corral - STUNNING evidence
Names in the News
New Product Showcase
Classified Advertising
The Insider

Meat&Poultry - June 2013