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NORWALK, Conn. -- Stew Leonard's last week here recalled a batch of ground beef that had been sold at its Yonkers, N.Y. store because of possible contamination with E. coli 0157:H7 bacteria. The grocer issued the recall after three members of a family were infected with the bacteria after eating undercooked 96% Lean Ground Round bought at the store on July 21.
The family-owned grocer, which prides itself on the quality of its fresh foods, recalled product sold at the store between June 30, and Aug. 1 as a precaution. Like all of its ground beef, Stew Leonard's said it purchased the beef in question from USDA-inspected suppliers, and ground it fresh daily in the store.
The chain said on Wednesday that health officials believed that the source of the E. coli did not originate from Stew Leonard’s, and that a full inspection showed that the Yonkers meat department met or exceeded all health and safety regulations.
According to a report in the White Plains, N.Y. Journal News on Friday, the origin of the infection was not yet confirmed, and there had been one other report of E. coli infection in Westchester County. Subsequent reports said that fourth case was apparently not linked to the three cases involved Stew Leonard’s ground beef.
"Customer safety is our top priority, and we take seriously any reported incident of food contamination," said president and c.e.o. Stew Leonard Jr. "We also continually urge our customers to always cook hamburger meat to an internal temperature of 160 degrees, which immediately kills any bacteria."
None of the other three Stew Leonard's locations are affected by the recall, the retailer said.