An Ohio family infected with the dangerous E. coli O157:H7 bacteria did not consume all of a multi-pound chub of ground beef that was a possible source of their illnesses, and what was left of the beef was found in their freezer by Butler County Health Department investigators.
When the Ohio Department of Agriculture found that the meat tested positive for O157:H7, it set off Tuesday’s national recall of approximately 131,300 pounds of ground beef from Tyson Fresh Meats Inc. in Emporia, KS.
Four children from the Ohio family became ill between Sept. 8 and 11 after eating the ground beef, and one was hospitalized for about 10 days. Butler County Health Director Pat Burg said the child has since been released.
Meanwhile, the Health Department is setting up a hotline to field questions and to determine if there are any other victims of the recalled, contaminated beef.
Packaged and sold under the Kroger, Butcher’s Beef and generic brands, the recalled ground beef carried a “best before or freeze by” date of Sept. 12, 2011. None of the beef remains in stores, but because it was sold in three and five pound chubs (chubs are packaged tubes of ground meat), the recalled ground beef could be in home freezers.
The recalled products include:
— Five pound chubs of Kroger-brand ground beef, 73 percent lean/ 27 percent fat, with a product code of D-0211 QW, shipped to distribution centers in Tennessee and Indiana.
-Three pound chubs of Butcher’s Beef brand ground beef, 73 percent lean/27 percent fat, ID code D-0211 LWIF, shipped to distribution centers in North and South Carolina for retail sale.
— Three pound chubs of generic label ground beef, 73 percent / 27percent fat, ID code D-0211 LWI, for distribution in Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin for retail sale.
There is an ink jetted number “245D” printed along the package seams.
The product was produced by Tyson on Aug. 23. Kroger has said it will have in-store signs notifying customers of the recall and will notify its loyalty card holders of the recall by email or telephone. Cashier receipts will also include the recall information.
The Butcher’s Beef brand meat went to Food Lion stores in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Virginia and West Virginia, and to Bottom Dollar Food stores in North Carolina, Food Lion said in a news release.
For the USDA’s retail distribution list check here.
Tyson’s recall is the second largest of 2011 for E. coli O157:H7 contamination. Earlier this year, eight other companies recalled a total of 312,268 pounds of meat. So far, the largest recall for E. coli contamination was 228,596 pounds of meat called back by Cincinnati’s Tri State Beef.