The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is recalling 40,000 lbs. of frozen ground beef products shipped to Georgia because of possible contamination with E. coli O157:H7 bacteria.
The frozen meat was produced on Sept. 9 by Palo Duro Meat in Amarillo, Texas, and shipped to two warehouses in Georgia for further distribution to institutions, including six public school districts.
Most of the product has not left the warehouses and none has been served as part of school lunches, the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced last Friday. Neither FSIS nor the company has received any reports of illnesses associated with consumption of the ground beef.
The USDA said the problem came to light on Sept. 22, when a company review of lab results confirmed positive testing for E. coli O157:H7. A tracking error may have allowed the tainted product to be mistakenly shipped out, the FSIS said.
The products being recalled include 40-lb. boxes containing four 10-lb. chubs of ground beef. Each case bears “Est. 7282” inside the USDA mark of inspection and a production code of 19110.
To avoid illness from E. coli O157:H7, which can cause diarrhea, dehydration and in the most severe cases, kidney failure, the FSIS advises consumers to prepare all raw meat properly; ground beef should be cooked to 160°F, a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria. Use a food thermometer to check.
If you have questions regarding the recall, you can contact Palo Duro’s vice resident, Trevor Caviness, at 806-372-5781.