Now You Can Make Processed Foods At Home

by Christopher Paul on June 14, 2011

If you see this ingredient, Transglutaminase, in any food, don’t eat it.

Transglutaminase is a chemical produced by the Ajinomoto Group and is used to bind proteins together. It’s a powdered meat glue and is often used in processed foods. Originally made from the blood of guinea pigs, there are vegetable based versions out there. It is commonly used in deli meats and other processed foods chicken nuggets. But it’s ability to shape foods is making it popular in fancy restaurants, too. In fact, its become so popular amongst the foodies, Ajinomoto is considering making a consumer friendly retail version glue.

Critics say it can increase the chance of food-borne illness. Suppers say chefs can’t experiment without it and, I kid you not:

“People have been manipulating food ever since they realized cooking a whole animal was difficult. Cows don’t come in hot dog form.”

The animal based version of meat glue was banned in Europe in May of last year. The soil based version is also considered being banned because of E. coli fears (and probably exacerbated by Germany’s recent outbreak). Of course, the US and it’s FDA and Department of Agriculture considers it “generally recognized as safe” like Behenic Acid (used in paint removers), Carbon Monoxide (yes it’s on the list), and Polyvinyl Alcohol (used in paper adhesives and concrete reenforces).

A Fish Without Bones: The rise of meat glue – Meatpaper via GOOD

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