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    Wisconsin Packer Issues Beef Recall

    WASHINGTON -- Green Bay Dressed Beef, a Green Bay, Wis.-based packer, issued a voluntary Class 2 recall of 1,860 pounds of beef products that may contain portions of the backbone from a cow imported for slaughter from Canada, said the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service.

    WASHINGTON -- Green Bay Dressed Beef, a Green Bay, Wis.-based packer, issued a voluntary Class 2 recall of 1,860 pounds of beef products that may contain portions of the backbone from a cow imported for slaughter from Canada, said the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service.

    Based on information provided by the Canadian government, the products subject to the recall may contain material from a cow that is reportedly one month older than the 30-month age limit. Both ante-mortem and post-mortem inspections were done on the cow in question, and FSIS inspection program personnel determined the cow to be healthy and fit for human food.

    FSIS said it learned about the situation as a result of a Canadian audit of the health certificate that accompanied the imported cow. Prior to slaughter, the health certificate accompanying the cow was presented to the establishment, and it appeared complete and accurate. However, a subsequent audit of information related to the health certificate by Canadian officials found that it was not accurate, and action has since been taken by Canadian Food Inspection Agency officials in response to findings from the audit, according to FSIS.

    The products subject to recall are:

    --Five boxes of 243 lb. vacuum pouched packages of “American Foods Group, NECKBONE UNTRIM’D, USDA CHOICE OR HIGHER” with the case code of 77333;
    --One box of 50 lb. vacuum pouched package of “American Foods Group, SHORTLOIN 2X2, USDA SELECT OR HIGHER” with the case code of 75231;
    --One box of 60 lb. vacuum pouched package of “American Foods Group, SHORTLOIN 2X2, USDA CHOICE OR HIGHER” with the case code of 75060;
    --Five boxes of 258 lb. vacuum pouched packages of “Dakota Supreme Beef, SHORTLOIN 0X11/4”, USDA SELECT OR HIGHER” with the case code of 75442;
    --Sixteen boxes of 811 lb. vacuum pouched packages of “American Foods Group, BLADE BI N/O CHUCK, USDA CHOICE OR HIGHER” with the case code of 75955;
    --Nine boxes of 435 lb. vacuum pouched packages of “American Foods Group, BLADE BI N/O CHUCK, USDA SELECT OR HIGHER” with the case code of 75952.

    Each box bears the establishment number "410" inside the USDA seal of inspection. The products were produced on Aug. 4, and were distributed to wholesale distributors in Pennsylvania, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

    Under the interim final rules FSIS implemented on January 12, 2004, certain specified risk materials must be removed from all cattle depending on the age of the animal. On this animal all specified risk materials for cattle 30 months and over were removed, with the exception of the vertebral column.

    At the time of slaughter, the animal was certified to be less than 30 months of age and removal of the vertebral column was not required. A subsequent audit determined the animal was just over 30 months of age; therefore, the vertebral column is required to be removed. A Class II recall is stipulated by FSIS in situations, "where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product," according to the agency.

    Retailers and consumers with questions about the recall may contact Sally VandeHei at 1-877-894-3927. Other food safety questions can be directed to USDA's Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-888-674-6854. The hotline is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (EST) Monday-Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.

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