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USDA Allows Recalled Meat in Processed Food

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  • LucyGoodrum@aol.com
    USDA CONDONES USE OF RECALLED MEAT IN PROCESSED FOOD ... David Migoya, The Denver Post At least 68,000 pounds of E. coli-tainted beef linked to an 18.6
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 5, 2002
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      > Knight-Ridder Tribune, August 2, 2002

      David Migoya, The Denver Post

      At least 68,000 pounds of E. coli-tainted beef linked to an 18.6
      million-pound recall by ConAgra Beef Co. may, according to this story, turn
      up on dinner tables as ready-to-eat canned chili, meat spaghetti sauce, beef
      ravioli or some other meal. Or, it might end up as pet food. Or fertilizer.
      And no one has to tell you it's there.

      A spokesman for the Greeley-based beef company was cited as saying Thursday
      that meat returned as a result of the nation's second-largest recall in
      history will be cooked and turned into food for people or pets, or nonfood
      products. Or both. That consumers might buy a meal containing recalled meat
      is legal -- and wholesome -- according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
      The federal agency must OK the company's plans for recalled meat. Cooking
      recalled meat is common practice in the food industry.

      ConAgra spokesman Jim Herlihy was quoted as saying, "I think we can say any
      product that is cooked per the guidelines established by the USDA and
      recommended by the Colorado Department of Health is perfectly safe for human
      consumption and to indicate otherwise is irresponsible."

      Lisa Scannell of Longmont whose 5-year-old son, Alec Scholhamer, was
      sickened last month after eating a hamburger made with ConAgra meat, was
      quoted as saying, "They're asking me to trust them again, and that's
      outrageous. They always blame people for not cooking the meat even though
      they're the ones who put the E. coli there. I'm supposed to trust them now to
      cook it, too?"

      Patti Klocker, assistant director of the Colorado Department of Health and
      Environment Consumer Protection Division, was cited as saying that recalled
      meat shouldn't end up as human food again, adding that, "By definition of the
      federal recall, it's not fit for human consumption. We recommend that humans
      don't consume it and that it shouldn't be turned into something edible."

      Herlihy said he did not know how much of the meat has already been cooked or
      processed. He could not say if it will be sold to outside companies or to
      ConAgra-owned businesses, or how much will become nonfood products such as
      fertilizer and tallow. "Cooking would render any pathogen harmless," he said.
      The USDA agrees.
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