Beef Product Recall May Be Linked to Two Deaths

cow_beef-recallThe United States Center for Disease Control (CDC) announced today that at least two people have died from food-borne illness – specifically 0157:H7 E. coli bacteria – that may be linked to a beef recall over the weekend. So far there have been 28 cases reported by the CDC, and all of them have been in the Northeastern United States. The recall was issued by Fairbank Farms of Ashvill, NY.

The recall consists of ground beef products totaling over 540,000 pounds that was distributed in 8 states, including Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The ground beef products were sold at Trader Joe’s, Price Chopper, Lancaster and Wild Harvest, Shaw’s, a unit of Supervalu, BJ’s, Ford Brothers and Giant, a unit of Ahold. The recall includes ground beef products that say “EST 492” inside the USDA seal. If you have recently purchased ground beef from any of these retailers in any of the states specified above, you should return it immediately.

The CDC has not specifically linked all 28 cases of food borne illness to the recent food recall, but they have said that every case involves the same string of E.coli bacteria. This bacteria can cause dehydration, bloody diarrhea and even kidney failure. People with weaker immune systems are especially susceptible to this strain of E. coli food poisoning.

It is recommended to cook fresh ground beef to a temperature of 160-degrees to ensure that any and all bacteria is killed during the cooking process. Of course, the only way to truly tell whether or not the beef is cooked to this temperature is to use a food thermometer – If you don’t have one, it’s a relatively inexpensive investment that could save you from a getting a food borne illness due to under-cooked food.

For a complete list of the beef products included in the Fairbanks Farms beef product recall, see the USDA food and safety website.

(Photo: Flickr – foxypar4)

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.