Kansas Firm Recalls Cattle Heads That Contain Prohibited Materials
Recall Release CLASS II RECALL FSIS-RC-012-2008 HEALTH RISK: LOW
Congressional and Public Affairs (202) 720-9113 Amanda Eamich
WASHINGTON, April 4, 2008 - Elkhorn Valley Packing LLC, a Harper, Kan., establishment, is voluntarily recalling approximately 406,000 pounds of frozen cattle heads with tonsils not completely removed, which is not compliant with regulations that require the removal of tonsils from cattle of all ages, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced today.
Tonsils are considered a specified risk material (SRM) and must be removed from cattle of all ages in accordance with FSIS regulations. SRMs are tissues that are known to contain the infective agent in cattle infected with BSE, as well as materials that are closely associated with these potentially infective tissues. Therefore, FSIS prohibits SRMs from use as human food to minimize potential human exposure to the BSE agent.
The products subject to recall include: [View Label Larger Image (PDF)] Various weight bulk boxes of "BEEF WHOLE HEADS, KEEP REFRIGERATED." Each shipping package bears the establishment numbers "EST. 19549A" inside the USDA mark of inspection, as well as a package code of "91700" or "93700."
The company is recalling all products packed before March 28, 2008, with the package code "91700" or "93700." These products were sent to distributors and wholesalers nationwide.
The problem was discovered at a State-inspected processing establishment that received some of the recalled products and verified that there had been incomplete removal of the tonsils. FSIS has received no reports of illness at this time.
Media and consumers with questions about the recall should contact company President Mike Grant at (620) 896-2300.
Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day. #
Pathogenesis of experimental bovine spongiform encephalopathy: preclinical infectivity in tonsil and observations on the distribution of lingual tonsil in slaughtered cattle G. A. H. Wells, BVetMed, FRCPath, DipECVP, DipACVP, MRCVS1, J. Spiropoulos, DVM, PhD, MRCVS1, S. A. C. Hawkins, MIBiol1 and S. J. Ryder, MA, VetMB, CertVR, PhD, MRCVS1 1 Veterinary Laboratories Agency – Weybridge, New Haw, Addlestone, Surrey KT15 3NB
The infectivity in tissues from cattle exposed orally to the agent of BSE was assayed by the intracerebral inoculation of cattle. In addition to the infectivity in the central nervous system and distal ileum at stages of pathogenesis previously indicated by mouse bioassay, traces of infectivity were found in the palatine tonsil of cattle killed 10 months after exposure. Because the infectivity may therefore be present throughout the tonsils in cattle infected with BSE, observations were made of the anatomical and histological distribution of lingual tonsil in the root of the tongue of cattle. Examinations of tongues derived from abattoirs in Britain and intended for human consumption showed that macroscopically identifiable tonsillar tissue was present in more than 75 per cent of them, and even in the tongues in which no visible tonsillar tissue remained, histological examination revealed lymphoid tissue in more than 90 per cent. Variations in the distribution of the lingual tonsil suggested that even after the most rigorous trimming of the root of the tongue, traces of tonsillar tissue may remain.