When I strolled into the meat shop last Saturday morning, my E-mail inbox had a surprise waiting for me! I received notification about yet another meat recall. But this wasn’t just any old meat recall. My eyes did a little double take. The recall was for a strain of E. coli known as O26. So, what’s the big deal you say?
Well, it basically boils down to the fact that E. coli O157:H7 is highly regulated and strictly enforced with a zero tolerance policy. This in itself is enough to drive a small (even large!) USDA inspected beef slaughter and fabrication plant mad. Why? Folks, there is no sterile raw meat product. YES, you heard it here. Not even a small slaughter plant can create a sterile raw meat product. Try as we may, there are no guarantees. I know, I know…you heard that grass fed beef or small family farms can’t have E. coli, Salmonella, or whatever bug. You read somewhere that small slaughterhouses somehow create a magical, mystical safe meat.