In today’s modern world, many of us often opt for convenient and quick meals, even at the cost of nutritional value. When it comes to meat, the processed, sliced deli meats are a popular option.
These meats might be convenient and tasty, but there’s a big problem: processed meats have been linked to cancer, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). But is it all really that bad?
A new company known as Clean Planet claims to combine both health and convenience in its meat products. Clean Planet is a company based in Clinton Township, Michigan. It was started by Jack Aronson, the former owner of Garden Fresh Gourmet, a salsa company that he recently sold to Campbell’s. The purpose of the company is to deliver “clean,” “whole,” meat products straight to customers’ doors.
These meats are individually portioned, refrigerated rather than frozen, free of additives and are available on Clean Planet’s website, and through Clinton Township offices.
Clean Planet’s website states it was:
“… founded on simple, down-to-earth principles: Make honest, healthy food, make it safe and out-of-this-world good, and make it easy to get and prepare.”
Mike Skinner, the company’s president and general manager, adds:
“The world is changing, and prepared and processed foods are becoming less a part of consumers’ desires, who are moving toward healthier foods. We want to change the way the world eats, and we are going to do it right here.”
Furthermore, Mike Griffin, Clean Planet’s chief marketing officer, states:
“Our approach is to make the most nutritious and delicious line of proteins we can. They are ideally suited, in portion size, to people trying to watch what they eat.”
Sounds perfect, right? Maybe not so much. While eating a whole meat product is certainly healthier than eating hot dogs, bologna or deli meats, when you look a bit deeper, Clean Planet’s meats do not appear to be the pinnacle of nutrition.
The first red flag is that these meats can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two months — much longer than any fresh cut of meat prepared at home should be. Clean Planet’s portions of meat are individually wrapped in plastic (contributing to the big landfill waste problem and pollution), and then are high-pressure pasteurized. The company’s website states:
“Simply put, our proteins are subjected to cold-water pressure (in excess of 80,000 pounds PSI) for a few minutes, and the results are nothing short of spectacular. It means that, properly stored in a refrigerator, you can expect Clean Planet proteins to stay fresh and delicious for up to 30 days.”
While this may be better than the methods used by many other processing operations, which utilize a variety of chemicals, subjecting meat to high pressure does not exactly sound natural. Also, the company encourages microwaving the meats in their pouches — the material of which they insist is safe and does not leach into the food. Still, doesn’t sound natural.
Lastly, the meats used by Clean Planet are not organic. Given the horrors of factory farming, this is certainly not an industry for the conscientious consumer to support.
It’s encouraging to see companies responding to consumer demands for more natural, less-processed products. However, the problem is with our mindset of convenience. While many of us are indeed busy, putting convenience as a priority over health can lead to grave consequences for our bodies and minds down the road.
Also, you can prepare healthy meat to grab on the go at home, and it doesn’t take much time or effort. Start with organic, grass-fed meat, or pastured poultry, and schedule an hour or two a week to do some bulk cooking. Cook your meat to perfection, portion and refrigerate or freeze. You can even prepare whole meals this way and store them for lunches, snacks and dinners.
That’s it! The result will be truly natural, not something shrink-wrapped and pressurized.
Tanya is a writer at The Alternative Daily with a passion for meditation, music, poetry, and overall creative and active living. She has a special interest in exploring traditional Eastern remedies and superfoods from around the globe, and enjoys spending time immersed in nature.