California Firm Recalls Beef Cheek Product

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Beef Packers, Inc., a Fresno, Calif., firm, is recalling approximately 1,560 pounds of beef cheek products because they may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service announced today.

The following products are subject to recall:

* 30-pound boxes of “CARGILL MEAT SOLUTIONS CORPORATION, BEEF CHEEK MEAT – SM BX.”

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These boxes of beef cheek meat products bear the establishment number “EST. 354” and a “PACKED ON” date of “07/02/08,” ink-jet printed on the label, however, the product was intended for further processing or for packaging as raw beef cheek meat and will likely not bear the establishment number “EST. 354” on products available for direct consumer purchase.

The problem was discovered by company microbiological testing.

These beef cheek products were shipped to distributors in Fresno, Modesto, Santa Rosa and Vernon, Calif.

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 foodborne illness.

FSIS has received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of this product. Anyone with signs or symptoms of foodborne illness should consult a medical professional.

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