The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, May 12, 1976, Image 7

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    A&M’s meat laboratory
no place for the squeamish
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Photo courtesy of Jim Pack
J. D. English prepares a shipment of retail cuts
at the Texas A&M Meat Laboratory. English,
meat lab foreman, oversees all phases of slaught
ering and processing of animals that come in to
the lab.
Battalion Managing Editor
The A&M Meat Laboratory is no
place for the squeamish. There is
more blood and gore in there than in
a Sam Peckinpah movie.
Cattle, hogs and sheep are
slaughtered and processed there. Al
though many of the animals come
from A&M’s Beef, Swine and Sheep
Centers, the Animal Science De
partment buys stock in order to ob
tain the type of cut needed for a
given purpose. They also buy par
tially processed parts.
The lab, a division of the Animal
Science Department, is located in
the Animal Industries building. Its
primary functions are teaching and
research; although the system usu
ally operates in the black, selling
meat is only incidental.
Students learn USDA grading
standards by examining wholesale
and retail cuts. The main difference
between prime, choice and good
grades of beef is thedegree of marbl
ing. Marbling is the flecks of fat in
the meat. Determining the grades of
beef takes skill and practice.
The manner in which meat is chil
led affects its tenderness. The
standard method for years has been
to put the cut into the “hot box” im
mediately after slaughtering. The
temperature in the box is 10 degrees
fahrenheit; it is called a “hot box”
because the meat is still warm.
However, this causes the muscles to
contract as it freezes and the tougher
meat results.
A&M researchers have devised a
method to leave the carcass at room
temperature for four hours. After
rigor mortis begins to set in, the
meat is cooled to 50 degrees for eight
hours. The rigor mortis prevents the
contraction of the muscles and keeps
the meat tender. Finally, the carcass
is cooled to approximately 33 de
grees. Only after it is processed into
retail cuts is the meat frozen. Meat
freezes at 28 degrees.
Researchers at the lab have de
veloped, somewhat by accident, a
method of hanging sides of beef to
keep it tender. The old method is to
hang the side of beef by the hock
(similar to the ankle in man). This,
however, allows contraction of the
muscles and, hence, tougher meat.
Several years ago, after tearing
and mangling a hock to the point that
it would no longer support the
weight of the side, workers hung the
meat by the aitch bone (hipbone).
They found that this prevented the
muscles in the legs and back from
contracting as much. The Ten-
derstretch method gives more ten
der round, T-bone, rib and por
terhouse steaks.
The first step in slaughtering an
animal is to stun and bleed it. if the
animal is killed before it is bled, the
blood will settle in, and ruin the
lower meat on the carcass. The ani
mal is bled by hanging it by its feet
and cutting its throat. The
foreshanks and head are then cut off
and the hide is removed. After the
entrails are removed, the carcass is
split into sides and cooled.
Retail cuts are sold, at prevailing
market prices, at the A&M Cream
ery. The meat lab itself sells 50-
pound boxes of meat at lower prices.
Incidentally, if you have a strong
stomach, visitors are welcome to
watch the lab slaughter and process
► «-• • ♦ •-* • • * #4
115 College Main • Northgate ,• 846-8019
Arabs to push Soviets from peninsula
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Associated Press
CAIRO — Saudi Arabia is quietly
using its petrodollar power to push
Soviets from the Arabian Peninsula,
diplomatic sources report. They say
King Khaled intends to rid his
southern neighbors of Communist
influence within a year.
Khaled, who came to power 14
months ago, is considered as
staunchly anti-Communist as his late
predecessor. King Faisal. For both
themonarchs, the presence of Soviet
arms on their strategic peninsula —
an arid wedge of land between the
Red Sea and the Persian Gulf — has
constituted an irritant and a threat.
Saudi Arabia is the biggest and
richest country on the peninsula,
whose other residents include North
and South Yemen, the Sultanate of
Oman, Kuwait and the United Arab
The Saudi efforts are now focused
on convincing the radical Marxist
president of South Yemen, Salem
Robaya Ali, that it’s more rewarding
to cooperate with Saudi Arabia than
with the Soviet Union. The Soviets
have a naval base and an airfield in
South Yemen, an impoverished land
of 1.4 million people on the south
west corner of the peninsula.
The sources said Saudi Arabia be
lieves it has already virtually
excluded the Russians from North
Saudi Arabia has agreed to finance
$104.8 million worth of arms from
the United States for the military re
gime of North Yemeni President Ib
rahim el Hamidi, a moderate. Once
the arms deal goes through, Hamidi
has said he will expel the Russian
advisers who have supplied and
trained his nation’s small armed
forces for the past 20 years.
Sources said there are about 150
Soviet military advisers in North
Yemen. It is expected they will be
replaced largely by Jordanian and
Saudi officers, with “only a handful”
of Americans on a temporary basis,
the sources said.
The efforts to nudge the Soviets
from South Yemen will be more
protracted, the sources said. The
Soviets have between 2,000 and
5,000 men there, working in the
Soviet military facilities and provid
ing training and maintenance for the
Yemeni armed forces.
Sources said ships from the Soviet
Indian Ocean fleet visit the South
Yemen facility frequently and Rus
sian reconnaissance planes fly out on
patrol sweeps about twice a week
from the city of Aden.
In addition to the Russians, Ali’s
government employs about 200 Cu
bans to train the militias and cadres
of the ruling party, the National Lib
eration Front (NLF). An Equal
number of East German specialists
train internal security forces, the
sources said.
Despite this sizable Communist
presence, the sources said, the
Saudis believe they have made a
good start and hope to reduce it to _
insignificance in about a year.
The sources said Saudi Arabia and
Egypt last year persuaded Ali to
prohibit the possible use of Perim
Island by the Soviets. The uninha
bited island has strategic value be
cause it controls the Bab el Mandeb
Strait at the southern end of the Red
Unconfirmed reports last year said
South Y6men received $40 million
from Saudi Arabia in return for the
agreement. Last March, Saudi
Arabia and Aden agreed to establish
diplomatic relations for the first time
since South Yemen gained indepen
dence in 1967.
The sources said Saudi Arabia
agreed to grant a further $60 million
to ease the transition to good
neighborliness. In return, the
sources said, the Saudis made clear
to Ali that he will have to dilute the
Marxism at home and stop trying to
export revolution to the rest of the
Saudi Arabia and South Yemen
fought a brief border war in 1969,
and Ali’s government supported a
Marxist rebel movement in the
neighboring Sultanate of Oman. The
rebellion fizzled out early this year,
the sources said. South Yemen also
fought a border war with North
Yemen in 1972.
Although the Saudis would prefer
to deal with an entirely new regime
in South Yemen, the sources said,
they are prepared to work with Ali if
he curbs the pre-Moscow hardliners
in his regime.
Arab sources believe Saudi Arabia
is prepared to extend $250 million to
South Yemen over the next five
years. This would be paid in install
ments to make sure Ali lived up to
his side of the bargain.
At the urging of the hardliners,
the sources said, Moscow came up
with an 18-million ruble loan this
month — about $20 million at Soviet
exchange rates.
But one diplomat said: “The Rus
sians are not about to get into a bid
ding war with Saudi Arabia. If the
Saudis play their cards right and
don’t force Moscow to lose face, the
Soviets are not likely to put up a fight
to stay in South Yemen.”
Departure from Aden would not
be strategic blow for Moscow.
Sources said the Soviet naval base at
Berbera in Somalia, 150 miles away
across the Gulf of Aden from South
Yemen, contains missile stockpiles
and is much more important than the
Aden naval facility.
Why the hell matriculate?
W hy, indeed, asks the
current issue of oui
magazine. Even if you over
look the fact that you’re not
being prepared for a job,
how can you stomach not
being prepared for life? For
four long years! At your
own expense! We could go
on, but then there’d be no
need to read The Case
Against College in the June
oui, and you’d miss such
titillating addenda as a
Conversation with Pele,
wherein the soccer ace
explains why fans kill each
other in the grip of their enthusiasm for the game. Or you’d
miss Timothy Leary’s examination of the technique of
Brainwashing, must-reading for you potential newspaper-
heiress kidnapers out there. Worse yet, you’d miss Letitia in
the oui center spread, which would sorely disappoint our
photographer, who spent mucho bucks and some of his best
lines getting her to disrobe just for you. So say OUI. ^
It’s at your newsstand now.
t (
C-1976. Playboy Publications
Truck crash kills 4, hurts hundreds
Associated Press
HOUSTON — A tank truck
loaded with 19 tons of anhydrous
ammonia plunged off an overpass
s onto a busy freeway and exploded,
trapping motorists in the toxic white
cloud of fumes. Four persons were
killed and about 200 injured.
The explosion on impact released
ammonia and the fumes spread,
turning the vegetation in its path
brown, an official of the Texas Air
Control Board said. Up to 20 vehi
cles were caught in the cloud from
the explosion yesterday on the
Southwest Freeway.
Most of the injured were over
come by fumes. Many were released
after treatment, but Houston hospi
tals said 68 remained hospitalized
today. At least seven were reported
to be in critical condition.
The air board said it would con
duct an exploratory investigation
today into the crash. The National
Transportation Safety Board said a
four-man team from Washington
also would investigate.
Witnesses said the truck failed to
make a curve at an exit ramp onto the
freeway, plunged 15 feet to the
pavement and exploded.
A dense, white cloud of ammonia
fumes billowed into the air, forcing
motorists to abandon their cars.
Others had to evacuate homes and
offices near the site, one of the city’s
busiest traffic interchanges.
The dead were identified as
William Gregory Schmidt, 28, of
Corpus Christi, driver of the tank
truck; Gordon D. McAdams, 40, of
Conroe; George Henry Pearson, 33,
of Sugar Land, and David Randall
Whiteman, 48, of Houston.
Schmidt’s truck was owned by
Transport Co. ofTexas and was haul
ing ammonia from Tenneco Chemi
cals Inc.
Invite the bunch .. .
Mix a great, big bucket full of
Open House Punch!
Serves 32... tastes like a super cocktail!
Greatest drink ever invented! Mix a batch in advance,
add ice and 7UP at the last minute.. .serve the crowd
right out of the bucket! Smooth ’n delicious. Wow!
One fifth Southern Comfort
3 quarts 7UP
6 oz. fresh lemon juice
One 6-oz. can frozen orange juice
One 6-oz. can frozen lemonade
Chill ingredients. Mix in bucket,
adding 7 UP last. Add a few drops
red food coloring (optional); stir
lightly. Add ice, orange, lemon
slices. Looks and tastes great!
You know it's got to be good... when it's made with
Southern Comfort®
Beat The High Cost & Availability Problems
of Student Housing at Texas A&M
The units are concrete in construction
and have the sturdy characteristics of
permanent construction yet may be
moved with little more difficulty than a
mobile home. Each unit comes com
plete with heating, air conditioning,
stove, refrigerator and carpeting. (The
unit does not include furniture as
After graduation the unit may be sold
to another student or'you may take
it with you. It can be used for a week
end home, camp house or office.
We will deliver the unit to your site
or lease you a site near the Univer
For additional information:
UNIT "A" 13*
UNIT 13* X13’ +• DECK
Unit “A” $7,000 or $150 a month on a lease-
purchase agreement.
Unit “B” $4,500 or $100 a month on a lease-
purchase agreement.
Call Bill Haley
College Station
To: Student Housing Group
1625 Main Street, Suite 200
Houston, Texas 77002
Please send me additional information.
Area Code: