Public health alert for raw boneless beef

Sept. 21, 2012 at 11:50 PM
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WASHINGTON, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- U.S. officials said they have issued a public health alert for raw boneless beef trim products imported from Canada may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service testing of raw boneless beef trim product from Canadian Establishment 38, XL Foods Inc. confirmed positive for E. coli O157:H7 on Sept. 3 and alerted the Canadian Food Inspection Agency of the positive results.

After follow-up testing by FSIS and CFIA, the CFIA announced a recall by XL Foods Inc. of a variety of ground beef products Sept. 16. Subsequently, the CFIA expanded the scope of the recall to now include the production dates of Aug. 27 and Aug. 29.

The company has notified its customers, including U.S. establishments, that beef trim associated with the recall was shipped to them.

FSIS is working expeditiously to perform effectiveness checks to confirm that all trim received at FSIS-inspected establishments from Canadian Establishment 38 either received a full lethality treatment or that no raw trim was further distributed and manufactured into other not-ready-to-eat product.

While the investigation continues, FSIS issued a Public Health Alert to inform food service operations and consumers. The products subject to the Canadian recall were distributed to U.S. establishments in the following states: California, Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin, where the products might have been further processed into various products, such as ground beef or ground beef patties.

FSIS advises all consumers to safely prepare raw meat products, fresh and frozen, and only consume ground beef that has been cooked to a temperature of 160 degrees F, checked with a thermometer.

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