Dr. Mark Horton, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), today warned consumers in California not to eat certain brands of ground beef products because the products could be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7 and may cause serious health risks. The products have been recalled by the manufacturer, Topps Meat Co.
CDPH confirmed today that WalMart stores throughout California received the recalled ground beef product with the brand name “Topps” and “Sam’s Choice.” Albertsons stores in Southern California received the recalled ground beef product with the brand name “Topps.” CPDH is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to identify additional California distribution.
The manufacturer, Topps Meat Co., based in Elizabeth, N.J., has voluntarily recalled certain frozen ground beef products sold under the brand names Butchers Best, Kohler Foods, Mike’s Seasoned Beef Patties, Pathmark, Rastelli’s Fine Foods, Roma-Topps, Sam’s Choice, Sand Castle, Shop Rite, Topps and Westside. The recalled packages bear the establishment number “Est. 9748” inside the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) mark of inspection as well as a “sell-by date” or “best if used by date” between “SEP 25 07” and “SEP 25 08.” The ground beef is packaged in 1.5- pound, 2-pound, 3-pound, 5-pound, 6-pound and 10-pound boxes.
Consumers should check in their home refrigerators and freezers for the recalled product. Consumers should either throw the product away or return it to the point of purchase.
To date, no illnesses associated with this product have been reported in California. There are currently 25 illnesses under investigation in Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Maine, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
E. coli O157:H7 infection often causes abdominal cramps and diarrhea, sometimes bloody. Those most at risk for serious complications of this foodborne illness include young children, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems. Consumers with any of these symptoms should call their physician.
Consumers with questions about the recalled products can contact Topp’s Meat Co. Consumer Hotline at (888) 734-0451.