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Beef Recall in Six States

Posted by feww on December 27, 2009

Oklahoma firm recalls 112 tons of beef products in six states

Following an outbreak of E. coli, National Steak and Poultry of Owasso, Oklahoma, said it was recalling 248,000 lbs (112,000 kg) of beef products in Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, South Dakota  and Washington state.

The company said it was recalling the meat products voluntarily and as a precautionary measure because it thought some of its beef products might be linked to a series of E. coli outbreaks in those states.

Although the company refused to confirm any contamination had occurred at its production facilities, it said they “will err on the side of being cautious” by recalling the products.

“This is the first recall in our company’s nearly 30-year history,” the firm said in a recorded message on a consumer helpline.

National Steak and Poultry of Owasso package frozen beef and poultry, marinated beef and poultry products as well as fully cooked meats.

Ecoli bacteria
An image of E.coli bacteria provided by the USDA. The bacteria can cause diarrhea, dehydration, kidney failure and death.The Agriculture Department, which oversees meat safety in the US, said it concluded  “there is an association between the fresh ground beef products and illnesses in Connecticut, Maine and Massachusetts,” after a cluster of food-borne illnesses in New England was reported, and a New Hampshire resident had died consuming ground beef that may have been infected with the deadly E. coli bacteria. More images

E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause bloody diarrhea, dehydration, and in the most severe cases, kidney failure. The very young, seniors and persons with weak immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact a physician.

SAFE PREPARATION OF FRESH AND FROZEN GROUND BEEF

From: USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline

  • Wash hands with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling raw meat and poultry. Wash cutting boards, dishes and utensils with hot, soapy water. Immediately clean spills.
  • Keep raw meat, fish and poultry away from other food that will not be cooked. Use separate cutting boards for raw meat, poultry and egg products and cooked foods.
  • Consumers should only eat ground beef or ground beef patties that have been cooked to a safe internal temperature of 160° F, whether prepared from fresh or frozen raw meat products.
  • Color is NOT a reliable indicator that ground beef or ground beef patties have been cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria such as E. coli O157:H7.
  • The only way to be sure ground beef is cooked to a high enough temperature to kill harmful bacteria is to use a thermometer to measure the internal temperature.
  • Refrigerate raw meat and poultry within two hours after purchase or one hour if temperatures exceed 90° F. Refrigerate cooked meat and poultry within two hours after cooking

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