So a while back I bought some ground organic beef from Costco "Organic Ranchers" and had it in the freezer until last night. After letting it thaw for a day in the fridge, I opened it up and it smelled of sulfur.
I soaked it in water for a few minutes before cooking - it tasted ok, but then got to wonder about it so googled. There's a few answers about the proteins in meat reacting with the cryovac sealing process or something like that, which doesn't make sense, since I've had other similarly packaged beef and bison before and none had a sulfur smell. Before this, my local Costco had a different one called "Verde Farms" which was perfectly fine, and packaged in the same kind of pack.
One of the google hits produced this: http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/pubs/Food_Irradiation_Gross_Failure.pdf which also mentions a sulfuric smell. Also found a similar article here: http://www.centerforfoodsafety.org/pubs/Irradiation%20fact%20sheet.pdf
So was this being irradiated now? Even the organic stuff? If so, I'm gonna have to give it up for just the grassfed stuff, which sadly is 3x the cost, but if that's what's going on, I'll certainly pass on this stuff.
Anyone have info on this?
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I don't really know about sulfurous smells being caused by irradiated beef or how much beef is irradiated in the US. The only way you could answer your question is to contact the supplier and ask them.
According to this blog the Organic Ranchers beef is supplied by this company: http://dakotabeefcompany.com/about-our-organic-beef
Sulfurous smells can be caused by bacterial contamination of the meat by certain types of bacteria. I would personally avoid eating meat that has any kind of unpleasant odor about it.
Indication of Spoilage:
Ammonia or sulfur smell, bad odor, tallow or chalky taste.
Degradation of proteins, lipids (fats) and carbohydrates caused by bacteria and/or enzymes naturally present in meat.
I think I need to make a paleo "jump to conclusions" mat. I think you landed on the "I've been poisoned" or "blame agribusiness" square. ;)
Seriously though, how about the most likely explanation? It was simply an off package of meat.