Recently the U.S.D.A. announced that, due to complaints from many parents and school districts, schools would be allowed to serve beef products without ammonia-treated filler. This change to the national school lunch program would start next year and give schools the option to eliminate the pink colored beef from the school diet.
Schools are not happy with the announcement because it leaves parents with the opinion that the matter is solved. The truth is that the details of the announcement hide the fact that the three options made available will either result in higher costs for the school district, or make it appear the school has elected to serve the pink-colored beef, despite complaints from parents and students.
One of the three options is less expensive, but contains the treated pink beef. The other two options contain no treated beef but entail extra expense for turning the beef into school burger patties. There are also problems with traceability and accountability of beef suppliers that make ensuring no pink filler beef is in the products purchased by the school district.