If you’ve been following the news recently, it may seem like a particularly dangerous time to be a American grocery shopper. In the past month or two, we’ve seen warnings about romaine lettuce contaminated with E. coli, more than 200 million eggs potentially contaminated with salmonella and many Californians and Canadians exposed to norovirus from raw oysters.
Although each of those stories has its own complications and developments, yet another food-related story has just come out as well.
According to various news outlets, more than 35,000 pounds of ground beef is also being recalled from Kroger supermarkets.
The recall was initiated by JBS USA, Inc., a beef supplier based out of North Carolina. While this incident wasn’t related to food-borne illnesses, a news release from the USDA explained that “foreign matter” had been found in some of the food. A more complete statement was posted on their website:
“JBS USA, Inc., a Lenoir, N.C. establishment, is recalling approximately 35,464 pounds of raw ground beef products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically hard plastic, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.
The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. 34176” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to distribution centers in Virginia and Indiana for further distribution to retail locations.”
The recall is set to affect many popular and prominent Kroger brands of meat.
Some of the affected packages include Kroger-brand ground beef, Private Selection Angus Beef, Kroger-brand ground sirloin and All Natural Laura’s lean and angus beef, among others. While new packages won’t be available on Kroger shelves effective immediately, consumers are also warned to check any meat packages they may already have in the fridge or freezer. More specifically, any packages with labelling that reads “EST. 34176” inside the USDA mark of inspection should be discarded for safety.
For their part, JBS USA has tried to be transparent about their mistake through open communication with their customers.
All of the products that were recalled are labelled with a sell by date of April 9th. With any luck, this should be an isolated problem that gets these products back on the shelves sooner rather than later. To help encourage communication throughout this process, the company has also suggested that consumers and others interested in more detail contact their director of external communications, Cheri Schneider, at (970) 506-7717.
While this recall may not be quite as dangerous as some of the others going around, it serves as yet another reminder to be careful consumers.
Whether it’s beef or any other kind of industrially processed and packaged food, be sure to practice good hygiene and to inspect it before digging in! As always, try to stay up to date with foods news as well in case of any unusual situations like this one. Although mistakes do happen in the food supply chain, here’s to hoping everyone stays safe and this situation is sorted out quickly.
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