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MERCED, Calif. - The Richwood Meat Co. here issued a recall of at least seven brands of frozen ground beef it produced here and distributed in California, Arizona, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington over fear that it might have been contaminated with E. coli.
According to regional press reports, Richwood recalled more than 100,000 pounds of possibly tainted frozen ground beef patties, which were manufactured in late April and early May 2006 and distributed in the five affected states to grocers including WinCo and Vons, as well as other discount grocers and institutional foodservice.
The Napa County Public Health Division said Friday that there were three known and two probable cases of E. coli-related illness in children since early April of this year. All of the children have recovered without lasting ill effects, and tests are being run to confirm that the beef was the source of the outbreak.
The California Department of Health Services tested one of the lots of ground beef patties that was produced in April 2006 and found that it contained E. coli.
The companies whose Richwood-produced ground beef patties are being recalled include Fireriver Classic, Ritz Food, Chef's Pride, Blackwood Farms, and Golbon.