I’m willing to admit it: Yo quiero Taco Bell. I don’t kid myself that they serve gourmet Mexican food (and really, I’m not that interested in gourmet Mexican, preferring a well made and authentic street taco), but they’re a dependable and easy-to-locate source of tasty, well-wrapped meat and cheese products, and the “fresca” menu is way better than you’d expect.
But apparently Amanda Obney doesn’t quiero Taco Bell so much, and has brought a class action suit against the company claiming that the “seasoned meat” they use in tacos and other products is actually less than 40% beef. Horseshit (the expression, I mean – I don’t think it’s made out of horse shit).
I don’t know why this chick has her panties in a bunch, (one of the lawfirms that signed on is named Blood, Hurst & O’Reardon LLP, though), and I’m willing to stipulate that fast food is, by defiinition, perhaps a little less pure and healthy than venison from a deer you’ve taken yourself, but no way is that filling less than 40% beef.
Taco Bell says so too. They’ve taken out full page ads in major papers around the country and sent out press releases to everyone they can think of (I know this because I got one) to explain what their meat filling really is: 88% USDA beef (not that the USDA stamp means as much as it may have in the past, but that’s a different kettle of fish) and 12% “secret recipe.” Plain ground beef “tastes boring” they say. I’d tend to agree.
For those curious, they do lay out the “secret recipe:” 3% water, 4% spices, and 5% Dutch monkey meat. I’m lying. 5% is a combination of oats, caramelized sugar, yeast, citric acid and a couple of unnamed ingredients that they say add to the taste, flavor and texture. Whatever: I may not cook with all that stuff, but I’m happy to munch it down occasionally.
In fact, the only real complaints I have with the Bell are that the cinnamon crisps aren’t quite as satisfying as I always think they’ll be, and they’re contributing to the retardation of the English language by using non-words like “Stuft” in their product line.
Here’s a video of the president of the company (who sounds Australian, so you know you can trust him) explaining the whole thing. The whole meat thing, not the whole “let’s dumb down English some more” thing.
He seems nice, doesn’t he? Here’s how much I trust him: If Mr. Creed wants to pay for it, I’ll eat a Taco Bell “seasoned meat” product every day for a full year just to prove that their food has the Meatist’s support. Just give me a call, Mr Creed, and I’ll start my year-long adventure to south of the border. Wait, that didn’t come out quite right…