State University of New York Institute of Technology
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Public-Health Issues Prominent in World Press Part II (Pink Slime)

Is our food really safe? This is a question asked by everyone and often capitilized by sensationalists. Recently, the beef product "lean, finely textured beef" has been attacked by critics calling it "pink slime". The issue is interesting in that it not only brings up the ethics of serving and producing "pink slime", but also the media's coverage of the events. Company backers claim that the meat is perfectly safe and tested though "proof" is scarce on either side. As such, this ethical issue deals much with releasing reliable information. This also deals with the media's response. The media responce has been to blow the concerns completely out of proportion to the evidence presented. This raises the question of if it is ethical to incite this kind of panic when the evidence presented is not conclusive. On the other hand, if the food isn't safe, is it ethical to let this continue while additional studies are done? Even if the evidence hadn't been hyped, would the issue have become just as blown out of proportion? It's likely since food supply scares are quite "popular" and tend to cause panic even when not hyped. As with most ethics cases, this is a complicated case and their is no simple sollution.


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