What Does Forged In Fire Do With The Meat After Its Slicing Challenges?

"Forged in Fire" is the reality TV show for anyone who likes swords. The series sees blacksmiths competing to create the coolest historic blades, and has been running since 2015, according to IMDb. Each episode pits four contestants against each other to duke it out for a $10,000 cash prize, as well as the honor of being named the winner (via Distractify). Originally hosted by Wil Willis, the show has been hosted by former U.S. Army Green Beret Grady Powell since 2021, according to Distractify.

With almost 200 episodes aired so far, it's clear that the show has been a real hit amongst viewers. But not all aspects of the show have been universally beloved. In fact, one part of the show — in which contestants test their blades on raw meat — has drawn questions from fans, who wonder if the meat is really necessary, and what happens to it after filming is over.

How meat is used on the show

Meat is used on the show primarily as a test for recently-created blades, according to GameSpot. Since the blades contestants make are designed to be able to easily cut through meat and other dense objects, testing the blades by slicing through chicken and fish helps ensure that they are sharp and can carry out their intended purposes. The images of this testing can sometimes appear graphic, with entire carcasses occasionally being used to test blades, according to Distractify.

Questions about the fate of the meat used on the show have led some showrunners behind "Knife Or Death," a spinoff of "Forged in Fire," to come forward and explain what happens to the meat on their show.

Bill Goldberg, the host of "Knife or Death," said the series is conscious of food waste. "It just depends on what's on the menu that day, because it's quite possible that it can end up on a grill right next to set," Goldberg told GameSpot. "Most of the time, the fish does not go to waste, whether it be cleaned up and sushied or put on the grill. We try not to waste anything on that show."

What Forged in Fire does with their meat

It appears the "Forged in Fire" showrunners have a similar awareness of their food waste, though the setup of their show makes eating the food slightly more difficult, according to Distractify. On "Forged in Fire", meat often hangs for hours in a warehouse without being refrigerated, which makes it unsafe for human consumption. That means an after-work barbeque is likely out of the question. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that the food is wasted. One former contestant appeared to confirm on Reddit that most of the meat is donated. Though humans can't eat the meat, there are lower standards for food consumed by animals, and this contestant suggested much of the excess food goes to wildlife reserves and similar organizations.

Other online users have offered conflicting statements, including an unsubstantiated report from someone on Reddit who claims to work on the show. They said that much of the meat is discarded, because it has been sitting out for so many hours and sometimes ends up on the floor. However, these rumors are unconfirmed, and other evidence seems to suggest that, when possible, meat is in fact donated.