LA Firm Recalls Ground Beef Products for E. coli

Commercial Meat Co., of Los Angeles, California, is recalling approximately 377,775 pounds of ground beef products that may be contaminated with the dangerous E. coli O157:H7 pathogen, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) just announced.

The FSIS has classified this as a Class I Recall, which means that this is a health hazard situation in which there is a reasonable probability that the use of the recalled beef product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.

The following ground beef products are subject to recall; each case bears a label with the establishment number “EST. 4873″ inside the USDA mark of inspection. The products subject to recall were produced between September 7, 2011 and October 6, 2011 and were shipped to restaurants in California and Nevada, as well as to one federal establishment in California for further processing:

• 5-, 10-, 15-, 20-, 30-, 40-, 50-, and 60-pound cases of bulk ground beef
• 5-, 10-, and 20-pound cases of ground beef patties
• 10-, 15-, 20-, 30-, 40-, and 50-pound cases of ground beef taco
• 5-, 10-, 15-, 20-, 25-, 30-, 40-, 50-, and 60-pound cases of ground beef chili

The problem was discovered through routine FSIS monitoring in which a positive result for E. coli O157:H7 was confirmed. Commercial Meat did not hold the product pending test results, which resulted in this recall. FSIS and the company have received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of these products; however, it is important to note that the effects of E. coli poisoning can take some time to manifest with symptoms.

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 develop an infection from foodborne pathogens.

FSIS advises all consumers to safely prepare their raw meat products, including fresh and frozen, and to only consume ground beef that has been cooked to an internal temperature of 160-degrees Fahrenheit. The only way to confirm that ground beef is cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria is to use a food thermometer that measures internal temperature.

Commercial Meat’s manager, Neil Brown, can be reached at 1.213.622.6997.

Consumers with food safety questions can “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at 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 l0:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Eastern Time (ET), Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.

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