June 22, 2022

Consumer Reports Finds E. coli in Ground Beef at Seattle Fred Meyer Store

Consumer Reports says their experts have found E. coli in ground beef that was purchased from a Fred Meyer supermarket in Seattle, Washington. The ground beef is a Kroger brand, and the bacteria was E. coli O157:H7. The package of 93% lean ground beef has the Establishment number 965 and a “use by or freeze by” date of 1/11/2022.

Consumer Reports Finds E. coli in Ground Beef at Seattle Kroger Store

The Kroger store chain includes Kroger, Fred Meyer, Harris Teeter, Ralphs, Dillons, Smith’s, King Soopers, Fry’s, QFC, City Market, Owen’s, Jay C, Pay Less, Baker’s, Gerbes, Pick ‘n Save, Metro Market, Mariano’s, Food 4 Less, and Foods Co. Kroger operates supermarkets, multi-department stores, price-impact warehouse stores, and marketplace stores.

No illnesses are associated with the consumption of this ground beef, and no recall has been issued. However, Consumer Reports states that it is their opinion that anyone who bought 93% lean ground beef from Kroger or Fred Meyer stores should check them and see if the product has that Establishment number and best by date. If you have it, throw the meat away in a double bagged or sealed container in a secure trash can with a tight lid. Discard the ground beef even if you plan to cook it thoroughly to 160°F to kill the bacteria, because there is a risk of cross-contamination.

The USDA responded to these findings and told Consumer Reports that the agency is “continuing to investigate this situation to identify all possible associated products that may be adulterated and in commerce and will initiate action accordingly as soon as possible to protect public health.” Kroger has initiated an investigation and has contacted the supplier, Interstate Meat.

After you discard the ground beef, clean your refrigerator with hot soapy water. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after handling this product and after cleaning.

Symptoms of an E. coli infection include a mild fever, possible nausea and vomiting, and the characteristic severe abdominal cramps and pain as well as diarrhea that is bloody and watery. If you do develop these symptoms, see your doctor.

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