29,339 pounds of ground beef recalled on salmonella fears
July 23rd, 2012
04:00 PM ET
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The United States Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Sunday evening that Cargill Meat Solutions Corporation is issuing an immediate recall of approximately 29,339 pounds of ground beef on fears that it may be contaminated with Salmonella Enteritidis.

According to a news release by the agency, the FSIS was made aware of the potential contamination during the course of an ongoing investigation of a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis involving 33 patients from seven states.

The recall includes 14 pound chub packages of "Grnd Beef Fine 85/15" and bears the establishment number "EST. 9400" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The meat was produced on May 25, 2012, and shipped to centers in Connecticut, Maine and New York for further distribution. The products are no longer available for purchase and the use-by date has passed, but the agency expressed concerns that the meat may still be present in consumers' freezers.

According to a notification on the Cargill website, consumers with questions may review their ground beef recall information or call the company's toll-free consumer relations line at 1-888-812-1646.

The FSIS provides these recommendations for preventing Salmonellosis

Appropriate sanitation measures include washing hands, utensils and surfaces immediately after they have come into contact with raw meat, disinfecting preparation surfaces in a solution of one tablespoon unscented liquid chlorine bleach to one gallon of water, and storing meat at a temperature below 40°F within two hours after purchase or cooking.

In addition, cooked meat should reach a temperature of at least 160°F throughout, not just on the surface.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that people in a normal state of health who ingest Salmonella-tainted food may experience diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps, which typically begin within 12 to 72 hours. This may be accompanied by vomiting, chills, headache and muscle pains. These symptoms may last about four to seven days, and then go away without specific treatment, but left unchecked, Salmonella infection may spread to the bloodstream and beyond and may cause death if the person is not treated promptly with antibiotics.

Children, the elderly, and people with compromised immune symptoms should practice extreme caution, as salmonellosis may lead to severe illness or even death.

Visit: Cargill's beef recall site

Previously - Clarified – trouble sprouts up as 20 are sickened with Salmonella

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Filed under: Meat • Recalls • Salmonella • Tainted Food

soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. test1

    Its great you bring out this topic so we can discuss it here, there is no blogs that give a good information such yours.thanks test1 http://testdomain.com

    March 17, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
  2. Dr.Ifyou'lleati'lltreat

    You may not kill all the Salmonella but whatever may be left will not effect you .

    July 25, 2012 at 12:53 am |
  3. Burbank

    And I still have to literally fight with the restaurant staff to cook my meat well done! I get tired of sending it back over and over and over!

    July 24, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  4. Gina Guillotine

    All I can think of when I read stories like this is the waste:

    All the WATER wasted to raise that beef. It takes 2500 gallons to raise ONE POUND of beef.
    All the FOOD wasted to raise that beef. It takes 16 pounds of grain to raise ONE POUND of beef.

    Resources are wasted to raise meat, anyway, but for something like this, it's really tragic, and really aggravating, especially for those of us who know meat is not sustainable.

    In this particular case, we have 7,3347,500 gallons of water wasted. WASTED to raise MEAT that is going to be THROWN AWAY now.

    We have 29,335 pounds of grain just WASTED.

    And we have approximately 83 cows that have sacrificed their lives for NOTHING. To be thrown away like garbage.

    Sad, sad, sad. Truly disgusting, repugnant, and just SHAMEFUL, really.

    July 24, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • Gina Guillotine

      Sorry, math is off 469,424 pounds of grain gone and about 391 cows dead for no reason, when you consider only about 75 pounds of a single 1200 pound cow makes hamburger, specifically.

      So sad and wasteful, and I'm thankful every day to live a meatless, dairy-free lifestyle.

      July 24, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
      • What?

        Your math is seriously off – probably because your base "assumptions" are way off.

        There may be a point in a beef animal's life where the feed conversion is 16:1, but it won't be at that ratio for long. A more realistic ratio is 8:1. And when feeding these animals, not all of that feed is "grain" – I don't know where all of you people get that idea. A "typical" finishing ration, which contains the highest concentration of grain the animals will ever be fed, only contains about 50% grain. (So now you're down to 4:1 for feed conversion ratio for actual 'grain'.)

        391 dead 'cows' for nothing? Are you really talking about "cows", or are you talking about "fed cattle"? There is a huge difference between the two. By quoting only 75 pounds going into ground beef from each animal, you have to be talking about 'fed cattle', from which all of the steaks and roasts also are derived. So – absolute worst case – only your 75 pounds has been wasted from each animal, not the entire animal. If you are truly talking about "cows" – old, mature cull animals – then nearly all of that carcass goes toward making ground beef, and your numbers are extremely wrong.

        If you want to try to make a 'factual' point, get the "facts" right first.

        July 24, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
        • Kelly


          July 24, 2012 at 11:19 pm |
    • Burbank

      Cranking out 3-6 kid families is not sustainable. The rest of this is just bandaids, we need to adress the real issue!

      July 24, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Lila

      I was thinking the same thing.

      July 24, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
    • Pat

      You must be raising some very thirtsy cattle to use up that much water.

      July 24, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • altalks21

      Don't forget to beware of imports (in particular from China & Mexico) check the paint and the materials they use. CHECK THE WARNING TAG. They are full of lead, DEHP, cadmium and other toxic materials. It is UNBELIVEABLE that the government allows KNOWN toxic products to enter. These products should not be allowed into the U.S. until proven safe. They are slowly poisoning our children and everyone else, since some of these toxic materials don't leave the body but only build up.

      July 24, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • SixDegrees

      F uck off.

      July 24, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • Kay Dana

      Gina I admire your attitude but it is based on non rational assumptions. Lets discuss your first assertion in terms of physics and conservation or matter and energy? "All the WATER wasted to raise that beef. It takes 2500 gallons to raise ONE POUND of beef..." Okay please tell me EXACTLY where the 2500 gallons came fro m and where it ended up? Were the hydrogen and Oxygen atoms of water destroyed somehow? or were they converted into other materials? Exactly what are these materials?

      I live on a small ranch –it happens to be certified pesticide and herbicide free and nothing is grown that contains GE or GMO organisms. My water is pumped by my solar array. My water is located in an aquifer which receives water from the next highest water treatment plant ( AKA sewage treatment plant) in the city above us. I raise laying hens that are FREE RANGE and eat a specialized natural and organic diet . Tell me your story so that I can understand you?

      March 29, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
  5. Don

    My wife and I both got salmonella from pine nuts last year. The recall came out right about the same time we got it. I'm not sure why this doesn't happen with beef. Salmonella is not fun to have, I can assure you. It's painful and things get explosive.

    July 24, 2012 at 11:21 am |
  6. wyobob

    Another multi-million dollar tax deduction for cargill, they will probably repackage it and sell it back to the schools. Hey, maybe they can us it for prison food.

    July 24, 2012 at 11:19 am |
  7. GulpOff

    I've found
    the missing
    I'm a poet
    know it!
    Tra la la...silly cow season, if not mad?

    July 24, 2012 at 10:59 am |
  8. pgh

    This is no surprise considering (1.) about 100 cows' meat is agglomerated to create a pound of ground meat you buy in the store, and (2.) the USDA largely goes by visual inspection only (same as in the 1800's) despite the fact that you CAN'T SEE BACTERIA, they're too small.

    July 24, 2012 at 8:41 am |
    • You are not intelligent

      Nobody is trying to say they see Salmonella. There is plenty of tests for these things.

      July 24, 2012 at 11:00 am |
      • jaysthename

        Try re-reading the comment you replied to, and maybe you'll see how much of a fool you made out of yourself.

        July 24, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • sumguy

      That's why I get my burgers cooked well done!
      Save medium and rare for steaks.

      July 24, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
      • Burbank

        YOu are taking a huge risk with your steaks. Even if cattle are raised on a range, they lie around in their own poop for days at the slaughter house waiting for their turn to die. The skin is the largest digestive organ. Don't trust places that tell you the meat is safe unless you know what the conditions were before they were slaughtered.

        July 24, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
        • Epistuff

          That's not entirely true. The reason ground beef is a high risk food and is associated with way more illness than a steak (or muscle cut) is that the bacteria contaminate the outside of a cut of meat. When that cut of meat gets ground up some of those outside bacteria are now distributed throughout the meat and end up inside the center of that hamburger. If the hamburger isn't cooked properly those bacteria don't get killed. When you have steak there's no grinding so the bacteria on the outside tend to stay there. When you cook the steak most of those outside bacteria should be killed off, even if it isn't well done inside. This isn't true however if you've got a steak where seasoning or flavor is injected. Now those outside bacteria are getting poked into the center of the steak and creating a similar situation to the ground hamburger.

          July 24, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
        • What?

          Actually, no – they don't "lie around in their own poop for days at the slaughter house". Slaughter houses are just that – they slaughter, they don't 'feed and house' the animals for days. Animals going to slaughter are shipped in every single day, and it would be rare for an animal to be kept even overnight, let alone for "days".

          And then there's this: "The skin is the largest digestive organ." Where in the world did you come up with that? Last time I checked, the skin was part of the integumentary system. In all my years of science, health, physiological chemistry, meat science, and biochemistry I never heard of "the skin" being a 'digestive organ'. Either I missed something – many, many times – or you don't have a flipping clue what you're talking about, and I know where I'm putting my money.

          July 24, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
        • SixDegrees

          Please take some classes. Any classes.

          July 24, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
        • Dr.Ifyou'lleati'lltreat

          I think you meant that the skin is the largest organ of the body, and cows are quite clean animals. If you have ever been to a dairy, you'll see that cows like to lay in dry shady areas and a lot of dairies have open stallsl that are layered with straw or sand for cows to rest in. With beef cattle they roam, eat down vegetation and lay down in shaded areas when it's hot.

          July 25, 2012 at 12:47 am |
  9. GulpOff

    Yeah, 29,339 lbs, not an lb more, not an lb less – but a lot of bs, somewhere...

    July 24, 2012 at 4:55 am |
  10. judith

    Just remember, that according to the Republicans "we don't need no stinkin' regulation.

    July 24, 2012 at 12:45 am |
    • dubrats

      maybe it's cause regulations don't work....duh......

      July 24, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
      • rlj

        Yeah but deregulation works fine, right? Because corporations are so honest and conscientious – or is it because their money makes the laws...

        July 24, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  11. Brian

    "the use-by date has passed"..........................................

    The timing of these recalls is interesting. They wait until the food has been eaten. The government admits that less than 5% of "recalled" food is actually recalled. Also note that most recalls are voluntary.

    July 24, 2012 at 12:31 am |
  12. oodoodanoo

    This is sloppy reporting. 29,339 lbs? What about the stuff after the decimal point?

    July 24, 2012 at 12:09 am |
  13. Peter

    This is what happens in our modern day food source.

    Sanitation takes the back seat before profits.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:52 pm |
  14. Shane

    I cook my beef fully, I handle it properly,

    Not a major concern of mine.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:39 pm |
    • qwedie

      Heat alone doesn't kill it. Well 2000 degrees would most likely.

      July 24, 2012 at 7:52 am |
      • What?


        Proper cooking – without cremation – will kill this bacteria and eliminate the threat of it being a source of food poisoning.

        July 24, 2012 at 11:13 am |
        • Morfinsizcekilen

          cupcake8million Posted on congrats- your lniivg my dream since you won't see your family/ friends for a long tie you could go cheesy- wish you were here or on the trail again or Where in the world is (your name)? Best of luck!

          August 4, 2012 at 2:06 am |
  15. Joe

    The solution is not to cheap out on the meat.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:35 pm |
  16. john

    Ew, who eats 85/15? Gross. Fatties.

    July 23, 2012 at 11:22 pm |
    • Jane

      It's called draining the fat out. Duh.

      July 24, 2012 at 1:34 am |
    • qwedie

      Hamburgers on the gril.

      July 24, 2012 at 7:53 am |
  17. dc

    Is there a way to check the meat BEFORE it's shipped?

    July 23, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
    • qwedie

      Not if the GOP get there way. Cut and spend.

      July 24, 2012 at 7:54 am |
    • What?

      Yes, but it is literally a "hit-and-miss" proposition.

      One 'batch' of ground beef will likely be at least 1500 pounds. Let's say you pull 5 samples from different locations in this 1500+ lb mass of meat – probably about 1 pound each. So you have a 'true' sample that is less than 0.33% of the total product. Now you are going to mix these 5 individual samples to get a "representative" sample of the entire lot. From this representative sample, you will actually use only 1-2 ounces for the actual counts. If you test in "triplicate", then you use somewhere between 3 and 6 ounces of product from what is, in all likelihood, around 2000 pounds (or more) of meat. You 'assume' that the entire batch contains only the bacteria you find in these – we'll be optimistic here – 6 ounces that were actually plated.

      Are you beginning to see the 'problem'?

      July 24, 2012 at 11:21 am |
  18. maria

    Call me crazy, but as long as you cook it fully, isn't the Salmonella killed? I think so. Just like with eggs. They say to always cook fully in case they are contaminated with Salmonella.

    July 23, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
    • What?

      We have a WINNER!!!!!!

      July 24, 2012 at 11:22 am |
  19. John S. D.

    Crap. I ate my steak a bit rare today. I'll be safe, it was frozen for a week in my freezer

    July 23, 2012 at 10:42 pm |
    • qwedie

      Cold will not help, how ever steak is an "inside" meat and not likely a problem anyway. Ground meat comes from all parts even trim of lesser meats that are next to the bone.

      July 24, 2012 at 7:56 am |
  20. Primal 4 Life

    Eat grass fed and finished local beef and this will never be an issue for you.

    July 23, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • Rebecca

      Only if you buy a single cow and have it cut/wrapped by a good butcher. The potential for contamination still exists but since they are only grinding your cow, the "recall" if ordered would only involve the 50 or so pounds in your freezer.

      July 23, 2012 at 11:03 pm |
    • SixDegrees

      Why? Salmonella is literally everywhere, and doesn't have a preference for what the meat it infects ate. In fact, locally sourced meat processed by small butchers is more likely to carry infection than meat processed at industrial facilities, where inspectors are present 24/7. In the former case, however, there are fewer total victims, confined to one locality, so you're less likely to hear about it.

      July 24, 2012 at 3:10 am |
    • Billy

      Better yet if you do get food poisoning by eating that beef you'll never be able to track it to the source. Everyone loves a good mystery.

      July 24, 2012 at 9:43 am |
  21. Lex Lothar

    What amuses me is that there are still people out there that think the gubbermint still cares about them!?!?!?!



    July 23, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • Doc Watson

      That seems profoundly ignorant and just silly. While our democracy may be lurching toward a plutocracy, in theory it is a democracy, which means it is OUR government and should be looking out for our interests. The things the govt get right far outnumber the things it gets wrong.

      July 23, 2012 at 9:35 pm |
      • mj

        In practice, democracy is nothing more than mob rule; the whims of the ignorant majority tyrannically get shoved down the throats of those that just want to be left alone. It is solely responsible for slavery, lynchings, segregation, wars, etc.

        It is by far, the most inhumane, corruptible, indefensible type of governance ever devised.

        July 23, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
        • dc

          If you aren't happy with it, and you live in the USA, feel free to leave any time.

          July 23, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
  22. LizGreene

    Follow the safe handling instructions and this wouldn't be a problem. Ground beef has to be cooked thoroughly and hands and surfaces washed. It isn't rocket science!

    July 23, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  23. Evan Henke

    The Food Safety and Inspection Service is a department at USDA. Not FDA. See Foodsafetynews.com or the official Cargill website for better information.

    July 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • RichardHead@Evan Hanks

      Better information? How many times within the past 2 years has Cargill recalled Beef? I agree that FoodSafetyNews is an excellent website.....Unfortunately they can't force the US government to repeat inspect these multiple violators.

      July 23, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
      • Evan Henke

        To answer your question about how many recalls Cargill has had, http://www.marlerblog.com/legal-cases/cargill-a-decade-of-e-coli-and-salmonella-outbreaks-and-recalls/ I also lament that our nation's regulatory scheme is a bit disjointed and confusing. I usually attribute this to our democratic system and the influence of special interests. I'd be for high-frequency inspections of repeat offenders if the data showed that it offered more food protection for the dollar. I haven't seen that yet, because to my knowledge we haven't tried it yet. Raw meat will continue to be a vehicle for foodborne diseases until a kill step (kill the bacteria) is introduced into the production methods, for example, irradiation.

        July 23, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  24. RichardHead

    Cargill again.....is this really a surprise? "We are really sorry that you got sick by eating this product, but Hey, it's not our fault". C'mon FDA and USDA,,,get it together,mass inspections of repeat Violators like Cargill.

    July 23, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • What?

      You apparently are unaware of how "inspection" works in a meat plant.

      ANY establishment that is producing product that goes into interstate commerce (crosses a state line) must have a USDA inspector present whenever they are in operation. If they are producing product without an inspector present, every single ounce of that product will be recalled – no matter what it is, or how safe it might be – it's 'automatic'. Production records are checked to see when product was actually made, and if dates/times don't match with an inspector being present, all that product comes back.

      July 25, 2012 at 8:31 am |
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