Jim's Market and Locker, Inc. conducted a voluntary recall of over 5,000 lbs. of ground beef as a precautionary move in order to alert consumers of probable beef contamination that was processed and/or handled by the firm.
On Saturday morning President Jim Goeser said, "We should note that we have a negative test on the beef in question from a certified lab but the voluntary recall must proceed."
It has been estimated that the 5,200 lbs. of ground beef that has been recalled would fill the bed of a 1/2 ton pickup, an amount of beef that is routinely handled by their firm within a four hour work shift.
As of Saturday afternoon the company received no reports of E. coli contamination.
Jim Goeser, president said, "We are very aware of consumer's E. coli concerns but we also have a high confidence the beef in question is safe. Ultimately, if the beef is cooked above 160 degrees F. as recommended (medium well) it would destroy the E.coli bacteria."
"The supplier of the beef to us (Jim's Market & Locker), did not have an E coli (0157:H7) testing method that was found to be "scientifically verifiable" by the USDA. Based on the USDA analysis, we and the USDA determined that the product could be adulterated."
Goeser added, "This being the case, we immediately followed through with a voluntary recall of the listed products below."
"The possible contamination of the product is very low, but never the less, the public's safety is our biggest concern and we began the voluntary recall process immediately mid-afternoon on Friday, Oct. 6."
He said, "I repeat, there is a very, very small chance of contamination but that was a small enough chance for our operation and the USDA to recall the beef as a public safety concern. We strive to place the very highest quality and safest products in the market place and we're confident this product will be found safe. "
The ground beef currently in question were produced on August 31 and September 1 before being sent to distributors in Illinois, Nebraska, Iowa, New York, Massachusetts, Texas and Wisconsin.
Jim's Market & Locker, Inc. has been in existence since 1961 in Harlan with over 25 employees and distributing meat products throughout the Midwest and certain other selected areas in the nation.