A Northern California company is recalling more than 8.7 million pounds of beef products because it processed diseased and unhealthy animals without a full federal inspection, federal officials said.
The recall involves a year's worth of meat processed by Rancho Feeding Corp., which has been under scrutiny by the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The agency said that without full inspection, the recalled products are unfit for human consumption.
The goods were processed from Jan. 1, 2013, through Jan. 7 this year and shipped to distribution centers and retail stores in California, Florida, Illinois and Texas. The products include beef carcasses, oxtail, liver, cheeks, tripe, tongue and veal bones.
Last month the company recalled more than 40,000 pounds of meat products that were produced on Jan. 8 and also did not undergo a full inspection.
The problems were discovered as part of an ongoing investigation, the FSIS said on Saturday.
A call to the company went unanswered.
There have been no reports of illnesses related to the recalled products. An FSIS spokesman said that because some of the products could still be frozen and in storage, a Class I recall was issued because using the products could have serious health consequences.
The recall by Rancho Feeding Corp. follows a recent spate of cases involving food contamination. Earlier this year, Tyson Foods voluntarily recalled 34,000 pounds of chicken for possible salmonella contamination. The chicken was linked to illnesses in a Tennessee correctional facility, where seven people got sick and two were hospitalized.
And in October, Foster Farms chicken-processing plants were linked to a Salmonella outbreak that sickened hundreds of people across 20 states. Although the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a public health alert, the company did not recall any of its products.
Al Jazeera and The Associated Press