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Failure to Remove Vertebral Column Brings Rib Eye Recall

Triple J. Family Farms, based in Buffalo Lake, MN, recalled approximately 15,270 pounds of bone-in rib eye products Monday because the bovine’s vertebral column may not have been completely removed.  USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said not removing the vertebral column in cattle 30 months of age or older is a violation of regulations to control Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE).

The recall is for approximately 40-lb boxes of “BEEF B/I RIB,” bearing any of the following case codes: “91-R109H-C,” “91-R109H-S,” “91-R109H-C-SB,” or “91-R109H-S-SB.” (See box label) Inside the USDA mark of inspection, the establishment number is “EST. 17466.”

The rib eye involved in the recall were packaged on various dates between Feb. 8, 2013, and March 21, 2013, and were distributed to an FSIS-inspected establishment in New York for further processing and distribution.

FSIS discovered the problem during a routine specified risk material (SRM) verification and it may have occurred as a result of a recent change in the company’s carcass separation practices.

Vertebral column is considered a SRM and must be removed from cattle of 30 months of age or older in accordance with FSIS regulations. SRMs are tissues that may contain the infective agent in cattle infected with BSE, also known as Mad Cow Disease, as well as materials that are closely associated with these potentially infective tissues.

Therefore, FSIS prohibits SRMs from use as human food to minimize potential human exposure to the BSE agent. There is no indication that any of the cattle slaughtered displayed any signs of BSE.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

© Food Safety News
  • gloria d

    and how in heavens are we the possible victims going to find out whether we have this problems sitting in our freezers or fridges? the key words are “for further processing”. by the time we buy there are no marks, no numbers. the steaks have been repackaged a few times over.

  • MellowCat

    This place has received 4 egregious inhumane handling violations from the USDA since Sept. 2013. The documents are available at the USDA/FSIS website. The horrific abuses going on here and their failure to correct the situation is alarming. I would avoid this place.