E. coli O157:H7: an Industry Research Priority

E. coli O157:H7, the cause for the recent, extensive beef recall, is one of the few types of E. coli that is dangerous to humans.  It is shed in the feces of many warm-blooded animals, including deer, geese, dogs and cattle. E. coli O157:H7 is harmless to most animals but can be dangerous to humans if contaminated water or undercooked meat is consumed, especially to those with an immature or weakened immune system.  Beef can become contaminated by cattle hides and equipment during slaughter and processing or by food handlers in the retail sector.

Potentially dangerous pathogens are uncommon in beef, which is due in large part to the industry focus on combatting E. coli O157:H7. Continue reading

Broken Needles in Beef: Prevention and Responsibility

Suspected broken needles are rare, but imagine the food safety risk if a broken needle

were to end up in a meat product, and potential harm to the industry’s reputation.  As a producer, it is very important to take steps to prevent needles from breaking, and to know what to do if a broken needle is suspected.

The following advice is courtesy of the Verified Beef ProductionTM (VBP) program. Continue reading