New federal rules allowing meatpackers to irradiate meat to kill microbes that might cause illness went into effect Tuesday. Some companies plan to use a small dose of radiation to irradiate the meat, but a spokesman for Iowa meatpacker I-B-P says they’ll use a different technology.Gary Mickelson says I-B-P will electronically pasteurize ground beef. Mickelson says the public will decide if the pasteurized meat is accepted.The irradiated meat is required to carry an identification label. Mickelson says this will make hamburger safer. Mickelson says consumers must still handle the meat properly to prevent sickness. He says if the meat isn’t cooked properly, there could still be problems.Mickelson says the irradiated meat will cost up to five-cents-per-pound more than non-treated meat.
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