'Meat Glue' Turns Cheap Cuts Into a $25 Filet Mignon

'Meat Glue' Turns Cheap Cuts Into a $25 Filet Mignon

Cambria Bold
Jun 11, 2012

Allow us to introduce you to a new ingredient messing with your dinner: Transglutaminase is an enzyme made by the fermentation of bacteria, and it enables industrial meat producers and purveyors to take cheap chunks of beef, "glue" them together, and create what looks like a pricey cut of meat. Unfortunately, this meat mishmash is not uncommon in the food service industry.

Here's how it works, according to Salon:

By liberally dusting meat pieces with transglutaminase powder, squishing them into filet mignon-shaped molds, adding a bit of pressure to bond the pieces and chilling them -- voila, four-bucks-a-pound stew meat looks like a $25-a-pound filet mignon!

The meat industry lobbying group says that meat treated with transglutaminase powder has it listed as an ingredient on the label, and is stamped with a "formed" or "reformed" sticker. However, since most expensive cuts of meat are sold in restaurants, the consumer never has the luxury to see this label.

Read More: What's Really In Your Steak? at Salon

Related: Quick Tip: How To Tell When Your Steak is Done

(Image: Subbotina Anna/Shutterstock)

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