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A worker laid off by a US beef processing company is suing celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, claiming his description of the company's product as "pink slime" lead to him losing his job.

Bruce Smith, 58, is seeking £43,000 in damages, having said the company and workers were "maligned" by the "unfair" phrase reports the BBC.

He one of about 750 people fired by Beef Products Inc, when it closed three plants and fired workers at its South Dakota office.

A social media campaign against use of the beef led to heightened public concerns over its health and safety – critics argued the food was unappetising and possibly unsafe, although regulators said the beef ingredient met food safety standards,

Smith claims that chef Jamie Oliver used his TV show and social media to target his former employer.

"Defendant Oliver proceeded to use his celebrity chef media notoriety to place pressure on American fast food company McDonald's, and others, to immediately stop using (lean finely textured beef) LFTB ground beef in its retail menu food products," the lawsuit alleges.

Neither ABC News nor Jamie Oliver made any comment on Mr Smith's lawsuit.


Jamie Oliver sued by employee sacked by 'pink slime' company
Digital Mag

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