Potential Contamination Spurs Ground Beef Recall

Raw hamburger meat
Raw hamburger meat | Image by CCat82/Shutterstock

A food company specializing in beef and pork items is recalling thousands of pounds of ground beef due to possible E. Coli contamination, the U. S. Department of Agriculture announced.

Escherichia coli are a type of bacteria found in the environment, foods, and intestines of humans and animals, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While most versions of the bacteria are harmless, some can cause serious infections and illnesses, such as pneumonia, urinary tract infections, respiratory illnesses, and more.

The USDA alert stated that Valley Meats LLC is recalling approximately 6,768 pounds of raw ground beef products after samples sent to a third-party laboratory tested positive for the E. Coli O157:H7 strain.

E. Coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause dehydration, bloody diarrhea and abdominal cramps 2–8 days (3–4 days, on average) after exposure [to] the organism,” the USDA said in its announcement. “While most people recover within a week, some develop a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). This condition can occur among persons of any age but is most common in children under 5 years old and older adults.”

All ground beef products under recall were packaged in large 12-40 pound boxes and shipped to distributors in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Michigan for sale to restaurants and other food service institutions.

Officials are concerned that these products may still be found in the freezers of institutions and restaurants. All affected products can be identified by the “EST. 5712” mark within the USDA inspection label and a date code of 231222. A full list of the recalled products can be found here.

To date, officials have not received any reports of adverse effects from consuming these products. Restaurants and organizations in possession of any affected products are advised to dispose of them or return them to the place of purchase.

This recall is the latest in a number of products recalled due to contamination concerns. Wisconsin-based American Foods Group issued a similar recall for tens of thousands of pounds of its ground beef products last September due to concerns of another E. Coli contamination, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

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