Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What else is in those processed hot dogs?

I would gladly join the lawsuit that was to be filed today against hot-dog makers by three New Jersey residents, who are seeking class-action designation. 

They are asking the court to order the food processors to add warning labels, and cite research showing a heightened risk of colon cancer in people who eat hot dogs and other processed meat.

I stopped buying cured hot dogs and preserved cold cuts a couple of years ago, hoping to cut down on harmful nitrates and nitrites. 

But I also didn't want to eat meat or poultry that was raised with antibiotics and hormones, and fed animal by-products, the industry euphemism for the bits of dead animals that go into the feed. 

Do you really want to eat beef from a cow that ate bits of dead animals and may have fallen down sick on the way to the slaughterhouse, only to be dragged inside to its death?

Trader Joe's, ShopRite, Stop & Shop, Fairway and Whole Foods sell a variety of uncured hot dogs, uncured bacon and unprocessed cold cuts. 

Applegate Farms produces a large variety of cold cuts without preservatives. You can find them at the ShopRite in Englewood and at Fairway in Paramus, among other stores.

I have some Nature's Promise all-beef hot dogs from Stop & Shop in my freezer. They are uncured and not preserved, and contain no nitrates or nitrites, "except for naturally occurring nitrates in sea salt, celery powder and nutmeg." 

Equally as important, the beef used was raised without antibiotics and hormones, and the cows were vegetarian-fed.


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