Consumer Information

Carcinogenicity: Red and Processed Meats

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the cancer agency of the World Health Organization, has made a conclusion that processed meat is carcinogenic to humans and that red meat is probably carcinogenic to humans.

However, the individuals drawing this conclusion ignored numerous studies showing no correlation between meat and cancer, and disregarded many more studies supporting the health benefits a balanced diet containing meat.

Scientific evidence shows cancer is a complex disease not caused by individual foods and that a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle choices are essential to good health. The articles provided can help inform readers and explain conclusions reached by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

Meat Myths: Nitrite Consumption

What is sodium nitrite?

Sodium nitrite is a salt and an anti-oxidant that is used to cure meats like ham, bacon and hot dogs. Nitrite serves a vital public health function: it blocks the growth of botulism-causing bacteria and prevents spoilage. Nitrite also gives cured meats their characteristic color and flavor. In addition USDA-sponsored research indicates that nitrite can help prevent the growth of Listeria monocytogenes, an environmental bacterium that can cause illness in some at-risk populations.

AMI Facts Sheet – Sodium Nitrite

What’s the Deal with Nitrates and Nitrites Used in Meat Products?

Wisconsin’s State Meat Inspection Program

Cleanliness. Wholesomeness. Safety. These are the standards of quality found in State of Wisconsin-inspected meat plants and products. The State of Wisconsin meat inspection program and meat establishments ensure that meat products produced in the state and sold to consumers comply with required standards for safety, purity and wholesomeness set by the state and federal governments. In fact, all products produced in a state-inspected plant must meet or exceed standards set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The Division of Food Safety’s Bureau of Meat Safety and Inspection provides many services to its clientele. Those services include…

WI State Inspection Overview

 Myths and Facts About Meat and Poultry

When the U.S. Department of Agriculture was created by Congress in 1862, it was called “The People’s Department” because nine out of 10 Americans lived on the farm. Today, fewer than five percent of Americans live on farms. The majority are separated from farming by multiple generations.This means that for many people, the news media, books and movies are their sources for information about how America’s food is produced…

Meat Mythcrushers Brochure

Sausage Makers Guide

A short series of PowerPoint slides proviede by Dr. Jeff Sindelar focusing on the base of sausage production.

Sausage Makers Manual

Here is a line to a site focusing on meat safety and prevention of foodborne illness. Learn about proper handling of fresh meats as well as ready- to-eat products. Read about current topics, view articles from experts and get answers to processing questions!

Handling Venison Safely

Venison is a nutritious game meat that you can enjoy as roasts, steaks, and ground venison; or use as an ingredient in sausages.
“How you handle venison just after the kill can have a tremendous impact on the safety and quality of the final product,” says Jeff Sindelar, University of WisconsinMadison/Extension Meat Specialist. “Proper care must be taken as soon as you down the deer.” Key points when handling venison are: One–keep it clean, two–keep it dry, and three–keep it cold. These tasks aren’t always easy to accomplish, but Sindelar offers these tried and tested tips to help assure safe and good tasting venison.

Handling Venison Safely