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E. Coli Recall In 11 States - Health Risk High

Posted by Jane Akre
Monday, May 19, 2008 8:06 AM EST
Category: On The Road, Major Medical, Protecting Your Family, In The Workplace
Tags: Food Safety, Recalled Meat, USDA, E. Coli, Defective and Dangerous Products

The USDA is recalling meat products from 11 states after a high risk alert for E. coli contamination. 


IMAGE SOURCE: Wikimedia Commons/ cows eating regularly minimizes E. coli/ USDA, Agriculture Research Service 


11 states are removing beef from store shelves after an E. coli contamination was announced by federal officials. 

The recall is being conducted by JSM Meat Holdings of Chicago which makes the ground beef products under different names.  The USDA reported Friday that no illnesses had been reported.  The extent of the contamination is uncertain at this time.   

Look for the 30-pound and 60-pound boxes and 47-gallon barrels of ”MORREALE MEAT” beef products distributed in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.    

All of the products have “EST 6872” and covers several forms of beef products including “Boneless Chucks,”  “Boneless Clods,”  “Flat Rounds,” “Gooseneck Rounds” and “Knuckle”.  

E. coli is a common bacterium normally found in humans but some strains such as E. coli 0157:H7 leads the way in food-borne illnesses affecting some 73,000 Americans every year and killing about 61.

Symptoms include diarrhea, dehydration, cramps and kidney failure. The very young and very old are especially affected. 

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) uncovered the contamination. Under the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) FSIS is responsible for ensuring that the nation's commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.  

In these days of massive agribusiness centers that process, transport and distribute, that is a huge undertaking for an underfunded agency.

The problem is complicated by the emergency of antibiotic-resistant E. coli which appears to be spreading.   The affects can have long lasting effects and can reappear months after the original illness.  

Both the Center for Science in the Public Interest and CDC have called for a public health plan to eliminate medically-significant antibiotics from use in animal feed as a growth promoter which is linked to the problem.

In 2007, about 22 million pounds of food had to be recalled because of E. coli outbreaks. 

 Just last week, dozens of people were made ill from an E. coli contamination found in lettuce in a Wendy’s meal eaten in North Ogden, Utah.  Two women have filed suit.  

It is recommended you wash your hands with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds after handling raw meat and poultry and wash dishes, cutting boards and utensils that come in contact with the meat or juices.

And meat should be cooked through thoroughly with that determined by using a meat thermometer.

More on the FSIS recall which includes:

30-, 60- pound boxes, combo boxes or 47-gallon barrels of "MORREALE MEAT" beef products labeled as "Boneless Chucks," "Boneless Clods," "Flat Rounds," "Gooseneck Rounds," "Knuckle," "Heel Meat," "Scotties," "Trimmings 50," "Trimmings 60," "Trimmings 65," "Trimmings 70," "Trimmings 75," "Trimmings 80," "Trimmings 85," or "Trimmings 90."   # 

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