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FLORIDA FIRM RECALLS GROUND BEEF FOR E.COLI O157:H7
WASHINGTON, November 24, 1998--Colorado
Boxed Beef Co., an Auburndale, Fla., meat processing firm, is voluntarily recalling about
359,000 pounds of various ground beef products that may be contaminated with Escherichia
coli O157:H7 bacteria, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection
Service announced today.
Subject to recall are all ground beef
products sold under the "Colorado Gold," "200% Guarantee," and
"Winn-Dixie" brand names with "Est. 7353" inside the USDA inspection
legend on the label and with the following sell-by dates:
- Ground beef patty products with sell-by dates of 11/06 through 11/10;
- Any other fresh ground beef products with sell-by dates of 11/07 through 11/11.
Products were distributed to
Albertsons, Wal-Mart Super Centers, and Winn-Dixie stores in Florida, Georgia, North
Carolina, and South Carolina. Some "Colorado Gold" product was shipped to
Jacksonville Naval Station.
USDA learned of the problem from the Florida
Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, which regularly tests ground beef sold at
retail stores. Product sampled by Florida at a retail store in Orlando was found positive
for E. coli O157:H7.
E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially
deadly pathogen that can cause bloody diarrhea and dehydration. The very young, the
elderly, and persons with compromised immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne
illness. E. coli O157:H7 bacteria have been implicated in several recent outbreaks
of foodborne illness across the United States.
"Because of the potential hazard of
foodborne disease from consumption of undercooked or underprocessed meat and poultry
products contaminated with pathogens such as E. coli O157:H7, we urge consumers who
may have purchased the suspect product to return it to the place of purchase," said
Thomas J. Billy, administrator of USDAs Food Safety and Inspection Service.
"USDA is informing the public so consumers who may have purchased product will check
their freezers," Billy said. "Although we urge customers to return this product,
we want to use this opportunity to underscore how important it is to always thoroughly
cook ground beef," Billy said.
Consumers with questions about the recall
may phone the toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-800-535-4555. The Hotline can
be reached from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday.
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