USDA issues public health alert for Canadian XL Foods beef
WASHINGTON — The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) issued a public health alert Wednesday warning the public about beef produced at XL Foods, Inc.’s processing plant in Alberta, Canada.
According to FSIS, beef from cattle slaughtered at the XL Foods plant was produced under unsanitary conditions and testing conducted on Sept. 3 confirmed positive for E. coli.
“FSIS has reason to believe, based on information provided by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), that beef from cattle slaughtered during the period associated with the recall was produced under insanitary conditions that resulted in a high event period (a period when the trim from carcasses exhibited an unusually high frequency of positive findings for the possible presence of E. coli O157:H7),” the agency stated.
XL Foods released a statement claiming that there is “no definite link of illness” between their products and the recent E. coli outbreak in Canada.
“XL Foods is committed to producing high quality beef products, and the safety of our consumers is our number one priority. We will continue to act in their best interests throughout the completion of the recall, investigation into source of contamination and implementation of enhanced systems to ensure something like this never happens again. Food safety is simply too important to our customers, our employees and our business,” the company said in the statement.