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Food Safety News

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Ground Beef Recalled for Possible E. coli Contamination

Update: Food Safety News called a company spokesman and learned that the recalled product was shipped to six states: Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee. The story below has been updated:

National Beef Packing Co. in Liberal, Kan., is recalling approximately 22,737 pounds of raw ground beef products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

Recalled products were shipped to retail distributors and military commissaries in Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee, according to National Beef spokesman Keith Welty.

The recall is limited to clear, 10 lb. plastic tubes of raw ground beef:

• 10 lb. packages of “National Beef” 80/20 Coarse Ground Chuck, package code “0481.”
• 10 lb. packages of “National Beef” 81/19 Coarse Ground Beef, package code “0421.”
• 10 lb. packages of “National Beef” 80/20 Fine Ground Chuck, package code “0484.”

All these products have a “USE BY/SELL BY DATE” of June 14, 2013. The products were produced on May 25, 2013, and shipped to various institutions and retail establishments. FSIS and the establishment are concerned that some product may be frozen and in shoppers’ freezers.

The problem was discovered through routine FSIS monitoring which confirmed a positive result for E.coli O157:H7. An investigation determined the firm was the sole supplier of the source materials used to produce the positive product.

No illnesses have been reported in connection to this ground beef. However, due to the time involved in tracing illnesses back to a food product, it is impossible to say yet whether or not an outbreak has occurred.

Health professionals advise cooking ground beef to an internal temperature of 160 degrees F to ensure any pathogens have been eliminated.

© Food Safety News
  • Jennifer

    Any idea which stores these distributers deliver to?

  • Oginikwe

    Is this real hamburger or pink slime hamburger meat?

  • John Munsell

    Kudos to FSIS for not only detecting the pathogen, but for its sudden willingness to traceback to the SOURCE of contamination. And some food for thought: in 2002, I recalled 270 lbs of ground beef which was potentially contaminated with E.coli O157:H7, a mere 1.2 % of the amount recalled by National Beef in this current recall. And in my case, the local inspectors documented that the meat at my firm originated from an outside source supplier. Because of my alleged “failure”, FSIS did not allow me to grind for 4 months. What length of time do you think FSIS will deny National Beef the opportunity to grind? My guess: National Beef lost zero grinding time.
    The primary “Failure” at small plants is that they are small, lacking the political clout and financial wherewithal enjoyed by the largest packers.
    FSIS’ primary focus is NOT food safety, but agency comfort.
    John Munsell