Just as the late, great Johnny Cash once sang about having traveled every road in the land, those 66 tons of ground beef recalled on Sept. 20 by Cargill Meat Solutions after a deadly E. coli O26 outbreak also went “everywhere” or pretty close to it.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service(FSIS) on Sept. 23 came out with a list of retailers that received the recalled product. It includes every Safeway, Meijer, and Sam’s Club store in the nation along with some others.
FSIS says it has “reason to believe” the beef contaminated with O26 went to the retail stores on the list, but the agency cautions that other unnamed outlets might also have received the recalled ground beef.
Here’s the list as FSIS has been able to determine currently:
▪ Safeway — All stores nationwide.
▪ Meijer — All stores nationwide.
▪ Sam’s Club — All stores nationwide.
▪ Target — All stores in Florida; Iowa; California; and the Denton, TX, Target store at 5452 Corbin Way; and the West Jefferson, OH, Target store at 4 Walker Way.
▪ Central Meat & Provision Co. — 1603 National Ave., San Diego
▪ Save Mart — 9999 Niblick Dr., Roseville, CA.
▪ Canal Fulton Provision — 2014 Locust St., Canal Fulton, OH
USDA is the only federal food safety agency that routinely tells the public where sales of recalled food occurred. FSIS adopted the practice during the administration of President George W. Bush when Dr. Richard Raymond was USDA’s Under Secretary for Food Safety.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not provide the public with retail lists, saying it would breach the right of food manufacturers to protect proprietary information.
Cargill Meat Solutions recalled the beef produced by its troubled Fort Morgan, CO, plant after the four-state outbreak of E. coli O26 involving 18 illnesses and one death, which also promoted a Food Safety Alert by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
FSIS associated the 66 tons of ground beef with the July 5-25 outbreak that, except for three cases, was centered on Florida.
CDC said the outbreak now appears to be over, but it did not end before causing one death in Flordia and causing kidney failure in another victim who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).
FSIS says consumers are still at risk if they earlier purchased the recalled ground beef and stored it in a freezer for future use. Consumers who may have purchased ground beef for their fridge or deep freeze from retailers on the list are urged to make sure it wasn’t a recalled product. Food Safety News previously published the entire recall list here.
The ground beef items listed on the Cargill Sept. 20 recall were produced and packaged on June 21. The recalled products bear the establishment number “EST. 86R” inside the USDA mark of inspection.
A month earlier, on Aug. 23, Cargill recalled 12.64 tons of ground beef also produced at the Fort Morgan, CO, because of potential E. coli O157:H7 contamination. Presumptive positive tests for the pathogen was the reason for that earlier recall.
Cargill Meat Solutions, a unit of Minneapolis-based Cargill Corp., agreed earlier this month to pay $1.5 million to 138 former Somali employees over the company’s pray-break policy for Muslims.
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