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E. coli Food Poisoning Outbreak Triggers Ground Beef Recall

19 May 2014

US - A US beef processor is recalling 1.8 million pounds of ground beef products that may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

The move follows a number of cases of E. coli poisoning in four states.

The ground beef products were produced by Wolverine Packing Company, from Detroit, Michigan between 31 March and 18 April.

The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “EST. 2574B” and will have a production date code in the format “Packing Nos: MM DD 14” between “03 31 14” and “04 18 14”.

These products were shipped to distributors for restaurant use in Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, and Ohio.

The US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) said there was no distribution of the products to the Department of Defense, the National School Lunch Programme, or catalogue/internet sales.

FSIA added that factors that can contribute to the size of the recall include potential contamination of additional products due to a lack of microbiological independence between lot production, as well as a deficiency in supportive record-keeping by distributors.

FSIS was notified of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses on 12 May.

Working in conjunction with public health partners from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), FSIS determined that there is a link between the ground beef products from Wolverine Packing Company and this illness cluster.

Based on epidemiological and traceback investigations, 11 case-patients have been identified in four states with illness onset dates ranging from 22 April to 2 May.

FSIS said it is working with state and federal public health partners on the investigation and will provide updated information as it becomes available.

TheMeatSite News Desk

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