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22,737 pounds of beef recalled on E. coli fears

By Kat Kinsman

– The United States Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Tuesday 22,737 pounds of ground beef products are being recalled on fears that they may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

The recall is categorized by the FSIS as “Class I”: a health hazard situation where there is a reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.

Recalled cases of beef from National Beef Packing Co. in Liberal, Kansas, include

  • 10 pound packages of “National Beef” 80/20 Coarse Ground Chuck, package code “0481,”
  • 10 pound packages of “National Beef” 81/19 Coarse Ground Beef, package code “0421”
  • 10 pound packages of “National Beef” 80/20 Fine Ground Chuck, package code “0484.”

The affected products have a use/sell date of June 14, 2013 and were produced on May 25, 2013. Cases were shipped to institutions and retail establishments and FSIS has expressed concern that some product may remain in consumers’ freezers.

No illnesses have been reported in association with the consumption of these products. The contamination was found as a result of routine inspection by FSIS.

Consumers with questions about the recall should contact the company at 877-857-4143 for details. Additional information can be found at nationalbeef.com.

Consumers with food safety questions are encouraged to contact “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 am to 4 pm ET Monday through Friday.

- Fast facts on E. coli

According to the FSIS, E. coli 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.

Consumers are advised to only consume ground beef that has been cooked all the way through to an internal temperature of 160°F.

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