May 19th, 2014
09:45 AM ET
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The United States Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Monday that 1.8 million pounds of ground beef products are being recalled on fears that they may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7.

Recalled cases of beef from Wolverine Packing Company in Detroit, Michigan, were produced between March 31, 2014 and April 18, 2014 and shipped to distributors for restaurant use in Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio. A complete list of products can be found on the FSIS website.

Based on investigations, 11 people across four states are suspected to have been sickened by the product. FSIS officials said in a press release that the agency is continuing to work with state and federal public health partners on this investigation and provide updated information as it becomes available.

The recall is categorized by the FSIS as "Class I": a health hazard situation where there is a reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.

Consumers with questions about the recall should contact Wolverine Packing Company at 262-563-5118 for details. Consumers with food safety questions are encouraged to contact "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 am to 4 pm ET Monday through Friday.

– Fast facts on E. coli
According to the FSIS, E. coli 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.

Consumers are advised to only consume ground beef that has been cooked all the way through to an internal temperature of 160°F.

Consumer resources:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Food and Drug Administration's Recalls, Market Withdrawals, & Safety Alerts
FDA Food Safety
United States Department of Agriculture Food Safety Education

More on food poisoning from CNN Health and all foodborne illness coverage on Eatocracy

Unfit for Human Consumption: How nearly 9 million pounds of bad meat escaped into the food supply
What is 'adulterated' meat?
When a slaughterhouse recalled nearly 9 million pounds of meat, this rancher got caught in the crossfire
Who is looking out for your food safety?
Food poisoning: What you need to know

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Filed under: E. coli • Health News • Meat • Recalls • Tainted Food

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soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. deegullan

    Reblogged this on The Intrepid Chef.

    May 27, 2014 at 2:24 am |
  2. dbud

    What's wrong with the news reporting? Every report I've looked at regarding this recall states that the restaurants that have served this tainted beef can't be named. Why not? I live in a state affected. Is this company trying to avoid liability by not naming the restaurants involved? Don't we have a right to know where that tainted beef was served???

    May 20, 2014 at 3:35 am |
    • ChesterCopp

      They won't name the restaurants because they don't want to risk losing advertising dollars. CNN is more concerned about profits than keeping the public safe.

      May 20, 2014 at 12:15 pm |
      • Kat Kinsman

        That's actually incredibly incorrect. 1. That's not how news works. 2. Sometimes information takes a while because we actually take the time to fact check and get the story right.

        May 20, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
    • john

      Do not blame the restaurant, which is what will happen if they are named, when it is the government and meat packers that allow this to happen. The American meat producers allow 3 times more meat – per hour – to be processed than any European meat processors as Europe is MUCH HEALTHIER when it comes to meat products and the American meat packers are a LOT LESS DILIGENT AND CAREFUL about what is – and what is not – safe to eat. Americans are being poisoned by their own governments lack of care in th food chain which is a LOT less stringent than in European countries...

      May 21, 2014 at 10:59 am |
  3. jay

    I was at Applebee's last week and I couldn't finish my Angus burger couldn't break the teeth with my teeth and gave up..after eating and leaving half of my Angus beef I had cramps and told my husband listen I think I got food poisoning bc my stomach is hurting and I have an urge to go now..which I never do unless I'm home..i had maybe pooped 6-8 long feces sorry for being explicit but yes I never poop that much and when my body tells me to stop eating,I do. I had ordered it medium well. Thankfully I was well after that.bc in the past I've got so sick that I felt like I was going to die. Never again do I eat meat from a restaurant. They need to seriously need to look into this. I nurse my baby girl and I want her safe too. But I've pretty much changed the way I eat especially more meat for less cattle to slaughter.

    May 19, 2014 at 7:38 pm |
    • Mike

      Hi Jay, Sounds like your cramps were from needing to poop. If you had food poisoning you would have had diarrhea. Also, since your burger was cooked med.well there is no chance of E. coli infection since the heat would have killed the bacteria. I work in food service and teach food safety. The numbers say you are more likely to get sick from eating at home rather than eating out.

      May 20, 2014 at 8:26 am |
      • What?

        And about the only thing in the was of true "food poisoning" that sets in that quickly would be a food intoxication due to Staph aureus, which occurs almost exclusively as a result of mishandling product.

        May 23, 2014 at 12:20 pm |
  4. Salmatt

    Just became vegetarian and you'll respect animals avoiding these kind of serious problems. They have got the right to live too.

    May 19, 2014 at 7:12 pm |
    • Kelsey

      Animals were put on this earth to eat. We have teeth BECAUSE we are meant to eat meat. I was vegetarian for 4 years until i almost died from lack of vitamins that meat provides for us. My iron levels were supposed to be at 27, but they were at a 2. My doctor rushed me to the hospital because i was in risk of a heart attack at 17 years old! I'm thanful that i didnt die. And im thankful that we are omnivores AND carnivores,

      May 20, 2014 at 1:45 am |
      • Salmatt

        I'm sorry for you but maybe you didn't know how to eat properly because no doctor told you. From the ancient times, men were born "FRUGIVORS", eating fruits, not omnivors or carnivors. Then they developed (even if it cannot be said a development..) in omnivors due to vital and environmental needs. I don't think any God would like to see any murdered creatures (men, woman and animals too) with peace!!

        May 20, 2014 at 6:21 am |
        • beth

          you do know that you can get ecoli food poisoning from things other than meat, right? I did not get mine from meat FYI

          May 20, 2014 at 12:21 pm |
        • Mike

          To the ill informed, E Coli comes from animal sources. When a vegetable is recalled because of E Coli, it is because it got feces on it. The feces can come from the run off from factory farms. It also can come from farm workers that are not allowed to take adequate breaks and have time to go to the restroom. So, when a vegetable gets recalled it is still probably because of the horrible way we raise animals to use for food.

          May 21, 2014 at 2:55 am |
      • Mike

        Physically, humans are meant to be mainly herbivores. If you look at our close relatives, most primates eat 90% plants and sometimes feed on insects. Our digestive tract is for an herbivore since it is designed to absorb as much out of our food as possible. Carnivores have short digestive tracts to get rid of the rotting flesh as fast as they can because of the health problems it causes if it stays in the body for too long. We do not have the teeth of carnivore or even an omnivore.

        If you disagree with me, I have a small experiment for you. Go outside and catch a rabbit with your bare hands. Then tear it apart, only using your hands, and eat the whole thing raw. You will find that our bodies are not made to hunt.

        We are only omnivores because of our brain. Our brain allowed us to move into colder climates and rely more on animals for food. We developed tools to use to hunt. So it took hundreds of thousands of years inventing to evolve into an omnivore.

        Just because we have teeth, does not mean we are supposed to eat meat. Rabbits, Deer, and other herbivores have teeth. We have similar teeth, that is meant to break down plants.

        It sounds like you were not eating healthy, and really had nothing to do with you being vegetarian. I been a vegan for over 5 years. I have higher iron levels than most meat eaters. My yearly checkups are better than when I was not a vegan. There are a lot of good cookbooks and sources of information to help you eat better as a vegan. Do not blame being a vegetarian as why you were unhealthy. You were not getting enough nutrients. There are a lot of meat eaters that are nutrient deficient. You can technically be a vegan on oreos and potato chips, but that is not healthy.

        Animals were put on this earth as part of the eco system. A system we are destroying by our food industry with factory farms, big agriculture, and the unsustainable process of making our food supply. As a nation, we better wise up or we will be living a huge mess for our children to clean up. Our plant can not sustain the US people eating over 10 billion animals a year.

        May 21, 2014 at 3:15 am |
        • What?

          Don't let your "veganness" override reality.

          We are not "herbivores". If we were, we would be able to digest cellulose, and you know full well that we can't. True carnivores have shorter digestive tracts because meat is much easier – and quicker – to digest than some of the more complex structures in plant products, therefore the residence time in the gut doesn't need to be as long.

          And please show me the CANINE teeth in rabbits, deer, cattle, sheep, horses, goats, camels, donkeys, etc. I don't seem to be able to find them.

          May 23, 2014 at 12:16 pm |
      • john

        You were not eating a proper and correct balanced diet when vegetarian as many people I know are fitter and healthier than I am and have been vegey for decades. Do not blame the vegey diet for your lack of health years ago, blame yourself for not eating correctly and allowing your diet to be so poor. How do you think millions of people in India cope ? How do you think civilizations rose and fell on so little meat products and diet from lack of meat has never been the cause of a downfall in civilization, it was always bad sanitation.

        May 21, 2014 at 11:04 am |
      • Ally

        Sorry to hear about your past healt problems, Kelsey. You can get all the nutrients you need without eating meat. You just need to be sure and eat a variety of foods that have everything you need. It takes a little more forethought than throwing a slab of meat on your plate, but is absolutely doable. ....and in my opinion... tastier.

        May 21, 2014 at 1:12 pm |
    • Ally

      Salmatt, vegetables contaminated with e coli sicken and kill more people by far than people eating actual meat products. The fact that e coli can be killed by proper cooking doesn't help someone eating raw veggies.

      May 20, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
      • Mike

        E Coli comes from animal sources. When a vegetable is recalled because of E Coli, it is because it got feces on it. The feces can come from the run off from factory farms. It also can come from farm workers that are not allowed to take adequate breaks and have time to go to the restroom. So, when a vegetable gets recalled it is still probably because of the horrible way we raise animals to use for food.

        May 21, 2014 at 2:56 am |
        • Ally

          You're are absolutely correct, Mike. I just don't get why some people keep posting their "glad I don't eat meat so I don't need to worry!" comments. It's like they don't understand how bacteria works.

          May 21, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
    • Thinking things through

      I am not joining your bandwagon. I eat responsibly raised meats and seafood, and responsibly raised veggies. Nothing I've planned on eating (or have eaten) has been recalled, ever. I did have to toss out some catfood after the melamine thing in China – and that was grain products so contaminated.

      May 21, 2014 at 8:08 pm |
  5. hurf

    Good old high quality american beef, the best in the world

    said no one ever

    May 19, 2014 at 3:41 pm |
  6. beth

    I had the most severe food poisoning HUS 157 last year from eating out at a restaurant. Perfectly healthy, mom of three, young 40's having dinner with a friend to fighting for my life. I was hospitalized for three weeks, had acute renal failure, 7-8 blood transfusions, kidney dialysis (daily), Plasmapheresis (daily) and many other things (shots to stimulate bone marrow) etc.. gained 50 lbs in less than 2 weeks. Fluid retention was out of control due to kidneys shut down. Fluid got into my lungs causing respiratory distress. Very serious awful situation to go through. No one should take food poisoning lightly. I am fortunate to have had my kidneys resume working after the infection was treated. I am now back to being a healthy person again, but I will NEVER look at food the same and will always overcook everything.

    May 19, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
  7. BEM684

    Buy grass-fed beef and the odds of it being tainted with e-coli drop tremendously. E-coli is found in manure, and most cows in this country spend their entire lives standing in each other's feces (packed tightly together, eating corn they don't properly digest). That's why we have to feed them tons of antibiotics too – otherwise they'd all be sick and dying.

    May 19, 2014 at 1:12 pm |
    • KarenK

      You've got it just a little bit backwards. EColi is indeed shed in manure, but it develops, or overdevelops, as a result of an excessive grain diet. EColi is present in the gut in small amounts routinely. But the grain diet often never completely digests, and consequently ferments and creates an environment where it proliferates.

      May 19, 2014 at 1:30 pm |
      • BEM684

        Fair enough. Although elevated e-coli in the stomach doesn't mean elevated e-coli in the shoulder steak, unless the cow had feces all over it when it was slaughtered, and the feces got in the ground meat.

        May 19, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
      • Beavis @ KarenK

        You didn't really mean "shed" did you?

        May 19, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
    • ss

      E coli proliferates during the processing stage. Tainted meat is mixed and processed with untainted meat and now all meat that gets in contact with the processing machinery and the tainted meat is infected,

      May 19, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
    • suj

      Guess you haven't visited a stock yard this decade. No matter what they've been fed, cattle are corralled in tight confinement and the conditions you cite are prevalent at every slaughterhouse. If you think grass fed cows are given the red carpet treatment to their doom you must also believe in unicorns dancing on rainbows.

      May 19, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
      • Thinking things through

        suj, since I know my local grass fed cow farmer, I call your bluff on this mis-statement.

        May 21, 2014 at 7:57 pm |
  8. nepawoods

    Either stick to whole cuts, or grind it yourself, or cook it thoroughly. Any one of those three and you're safe.

    May 19, 2014 at 1:05 pm |
  9. Glib

    Not a well written story. What stores or restaurants are serving or have been sold this tainted beef?

    May 19, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
    • Kat Kinsman

      The story is just breaking now. Not all the information is available yet, and in cases like this, we add to the story as it unfolds.

      May 19, 2014 at 1:10 pm |
  10. Bill D.

    "The United States Food Safety and Inspection Service announced Monday that 1.8 pounds of ground beef products are being recalled "

    That amounts to one package of hamburger

    May 19, 2014 at 12:41 pm |
  11. admin

    1.8 pounds of beef? Really? Headline tells a different story.

    May 19, 2014 at 12:13 pm |
  12. great food poisoning

    I was just trying to figure out what got me sick over the weekend. I have been having some distress let say. I think it was the angus steak I made. I need to start liking well done steaks I guess. no one even gets in trouble for this....

    May 19, 2014 at 12:06 pm |
    • nepawoods

      E. coli doesn't get inside a piece of meat. If your steak is cooked on the outside, it's fine, no matter how undercooked or raw on the inside. Ground beef is a problem because whatever may have been on the outside of the meat gets mixed all throughout.

      May 19, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
  13. bigbendjc

    Less regulations, less inspectors! We don't need no stinkin government...let the free market handle it!
    Let's play..E,,,,,,,COLI E,,,,,,,COLI (played like Marco Polo). Thank God I was forced to give up red meat (gout).

    May 19, 2014 at 11:58 am |
    • Hyper Patrol

      Might want to cut out the Starbucks & the blow, too.

      May 19, 2014 at 12:04 pm |
    • billbfit

      It's most likely the freaking beer not the meat. Eat a little baking soda in the morning and before you go to bed, and you can probably eat anything you want; except the beer. Especially the heavy yeast laden beer.

      May 19, 2014 at 12:30 pm |
      • El Disgusto

        Speaking of yeast, what do you call an anorexic girl with a yeast infection?

        A quarter-pounder with cheese.

        May 19, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  14. Gunner


    May 19, 2014 at 11:54 am |
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