Ground Beef Recall Tied To Ohio E. Coli Outbreak

An undisclosed number of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses in Ohio has prompted Tyson Fresh Meats Inc. to recall 131,300 pounds of ground beef, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced just before 10 p.m. PDT Tuesday.

In a news release, FSIS said it became aware of the problem Monday when it was notified by the Ohio Department of Health of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses in Butler County with onset dates from Sept. 8 through Sept. 11. The number of illnesses wasn’t given.

On Tuesday, results of tests on ground beef collected from “the patients’ home” on Sept. 19 were returned and were positive for the pathogen, the FSIS said.

The agency and Tyson said they are concerned that consumers may freeze the ground beef from the suspect lots before use, and that some of the ground beef may be in consumers’ freezers. “FSIS strongly encourages consumers to check their freezers and immediately discard any product subject to this recall,” the statement advised.

The ground beef being recalled is:

  • 5-pound chubs (cylinders of ground beef) of Kroger-brand “GROUND BEEF 73% LEAN – 27% FAT,” packed in 40-pound cases containing eight chubs. Cases bear an identifying product code of “D-0211 QW.” These products were produced on Aug. 23, 2011 and were shipped to distribution centers in Indiana and Tennessee for retail sale.
  • 3-pound chubs of Butcher’s Brand “GROUND BEEF 73% LEAN – 27% FAT,” packed in 36-pound cases each containing 12 chubs. Cases bear an identifying product code of “D-0211 LWIF.” These products were produced on Aug. 23, 2011 and were shipped to distribution centers in North Carolina and South Carolina for retail sale.
  • 3-pound chubs of a generic label “GROUND BEEF 73% LEAN – 27% FAT,” packed in 36-pound cases each containing 12 chubs. Cases bear an identifying product code of “D-0211 LWI.” These products were produced on Aug. 23, 2011 and were shipped to distribution centers in Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin for retail sale.

The products subject to recall have a “BEST BEFORE OR FREEZE BY” date of “SEP 12 2011” and the establishment number “245D” ink jetted along the package seam. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS’ Web site.

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FSIS said it is continuing to work with Ohio public health officials on the investigation. Consumers with questions regarding the recall should contact the company at 866-328-3156. Ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160° F, as measured by a tip-sensitive food thermometer.

Originally published on Food Safety News

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Mary Rothschild has had an extensive career in Seattle-area journalism as a reporter for 17 years at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and as an assistant metro editor at the Seattle Times for 12 years. She was also an assignment editor at KING-TV in Seattle, city editor at the Eastside Journal in Bellevue and an assistant metro editor at the News Tribune in Tacoma. She now lives in Port Townsend, WA, where she supports the local Farmers Market, the Jefferson County Land Trust’s efforts to preserve farmland and tries to keep the deer out of her own vegetable patch. Read more >

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