Last Friday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Final Update regarding a four-state outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 (STEC O157:H7). In total, 12 cases were reported; 58% of those people were hospitalized, but none of them died, nor did anyone develop hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).
As illnesses began being reported, epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicated that contaminated ground beef produced by Wolverine Packing Company was the likely source of the outbreak, according to the CDC. On May 19, 2014, the company recalled approximately 1.8 million pounds of ground beef products that may have been contaminated with STEC O157:H7.
- The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “EST. 2574B.”
- The recalled ground beef was shipped to distributors for retail and restaurant use nationwide. There was no distribution of the products to the U.S. Department of Defense, the National School Lunch Program, or catalog/internet sales.
- The recalled ground beef was also distributed to a limited number of retail establishments for consumer purchase.
- Read the full list of products that were recalled.
The CDC noted that although the use-by date of the recalled ground beef products has passed, consumers and restaurants might still have recalled ground beef in their freezers if the ground beef was frozen. The agency advises:
- Consumers should check their freezers for recalled ground beef products and should not attempt to cook the ground beef and eat it.
- Restaurants should check their ground beef products for the recalled establishment number and should not attempt to cook the ground beef and serve it.