Sunday, February 17, 2008

Downer Cattle Update: Now It's Recalled

So, as you all may remember, we were supposed to feel reassured when state and local officials reminded us that Westland beef had not been recalled, despite serious concerns about sick "downer cows" having entered the food supply.

Because, if it's not recalled, it must be OK. It's when they recall it that you should be really concerned.

Tonight from the AP:
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Sunday ordered the recall of 143 million pounds of frozen beef from a California slaughterhouse, the subject of an animal-abuse investigation, that provided meat to school lunch programs.

Officials said it was the largest beef recall in the United States, surpassing a 1999 ban of 35 million pounds of ready-to-eat meats. [...]

Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer said his department has evidence that Westland did not routinely contact its veterinarian when cattle became non-ambulatory after passing inspection, violating health regulations.


Officials estimate that about 37 million pounds of the recalled beef went to school programs, but they believe most of the meat probably has already been eaten.

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