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Contaminated meat could lead to lawsuits


Posted on Jan 15, 2008

A nationwide recall has been issued by Rochester Meat Co., which is based out of Rochester, Minnesota, for ground beef patties produced by the plant for fear of personal injury and product liability risk after reports of six people becoming ill after consuming the product. Approximately 188,000 pounds of ground beef patties, as well as some other products, were recalled by the meat processing company due to concerns over E. coli bacteria. The Food Safety and Inspection Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said that the meat could be contaminated with a strain of bacteria known as E. coli O157:H7, which is potentially lethal and can result in bloody diarrhea and dehydration. According to Neal Karels, chief operating officer for Rochester Meat Co., the company’s products are not sold by retailers. The company sells its products across the U.S. to be used in restaurants and other food service institutions. According to a report from the USDA, there were four reports of illness from Wisconsin and one report from California. According to Karels, the production date of the affected beef was October 30 and November 6. He also said that it had been identified by the company’s tracking system. If this contaminated beef is sold in North Carolina and injures someone in North Carolina, the victim would have a products liability claim. All food products sold in North Carolina carry an implied warranty that the food will not make you sick. Unfortunately, it is usually difficult to prove which food products (of all those eaten) made the victim sick.

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