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Public Health Alert Issued For Ground Beef Products That May Contain Hard Plastic

Ground beef Ground beef
Ground beef Photo Credit: Wikipedia/Rainer Zenz
A look at the product label. A look at the product label.
A look at the product label. Photo Credit: FSIS

A public health alert has been issued for raw ground beef products due to concerns that they may contain hard plastic, the US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced late Wednesday afternoon, May 11.

 A recall was not requested because the products are no longer available for purchase, FSIS said.

The ground beef products were produced on April 20, 2022. The following products are subject to the public health alert:

  • 16-oz. vacuum-sealed packages containing “ORGANIC RANCHER ORGANIC GROUND BEEF 93% LEAN 7% FAT” with a use by date of 5-18-2022.
  • 16-oz. vacuum-sealed packages containing “ORGANIC RANCHER ORGANIC GROUND BEEF 85% LEAN 15% FAT” with a use by date of 5-18-2022.

The products bear establishment number “EST. 4027” inside the USDA mark of inspection. 

View the product labels here.

These items were shipped to Whole Foods locations nationwide.

The problem was discovered after the firm received complaints from consumers reporting they found hard, rigid plastic in the ground beef products. The firm then notified FSIS of the issue.

"There have been no confirmed reports of illness or adverse reactions due to consumption of these products," FSIS said. "Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a health care provider."

FSIS said it is concerned that the products may be in consumers’ refrigerators or freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

Consumers with food safety questions can call the toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 888-MPHotline (888-674-6854) or live chat via Ask USDA from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Consumers can also browse food safety messages at Ask USDA or send a question via email to MPHotline@usda.gov. 

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