Burgers in Russia may not be as meaty and juicy as their counterparts in America. That’s because the Kremlin has banned many of the drugs legally used in the U.S. to juice up cows before they’re grinded up for value meals. One of these boosters is Ractopamine.
Ractopamine is a controversial drug used to enhance leanness of pigs, cattle and Turkey. It’s banned in 160 countries including Russia. In 2013, Russia banned US pork and beef imports after claiming that health officials found traces of the drug in American meat products after Russia had already banned it.
The FDA reported adverse effects in ractomapine-injected pigs. These included trembling, broken limbs and even death. However, the FDA said their data didn’t indicate the drug directly caused these effects.
Ractopamine is still widely used throughout North American meat industries.