“The fact is — meat does matter,” says J. Patrick Boyle, American Meat Institute president. “We are proud of the products we produce and decided it was time to speak more directly to the consumer. We believe that these brochures and their companion download site can be a valuable resource to our customers.”

The brochure series, primarily for consumers, retailers and foodservice operators, can be readily downloaded and printed from http://www.meatmattersinfo.org. Here are the topics.

  • Case-ready meats: Examines the growing trend in packaging meat at the plant under federal inspection for direct placement into the retail case without further cutting or handling. It also looks at the impact that packaging may have on freshness and color.
  • Product dating: Explains the different dates that appear on packages, including use-by dates, sell-by dates and “best if used by” dates. There’s also a chart detailing storage times for fresh and processed products.
  • Safe handling of meat and poultry products: Outlines recommended handling and cooking practices to ensure meat and poultry safety all the way to the table.
  • Meat and poultry nutrition: Explains animal protein’s nutritional value in the diet. Consumers can find a quick reference guide to the amount of protein they need and how to plan serving sizes.
  • Livestock cloning: Relates the emerging science of livestock cloning in understandable terms and explains the level of scientific review that it has undergone.
  • Animal welfare in the meat industry: Explains the regulatory requirements to ensure that livestock handled at meat plants are treated humanely. It also details the meat industry’s voluntary efforts to exceed the regulatory requirements.
  • Consumer’s guide to enhanced meats: Details how the meat industry is using enhancing solutions in lean meat cuts to maintain juiciness, prevent overcooking and ensure positive eating experiences.