* In 2007 it seems everyday I heard on the news that millions of pounds of beef were recalled - where did it go? I kept waiting for a big bon fire somewhere in the wide open desert where this would all be dumped by the ton(s) and destroyed - but it never happened. Here we are ending 2009 and no bon fire of the tons of recalled beef. So where is it?
Actually in 2007 I contacted the USDA and asked what happens when beef is recalled. I got a very nice response from the meat and poultry hotline - they have a virtual representative at: askkaren.gov - the response:
"It depends on the reason the product is recalled. If it is recalled for bacteria and it is determined that the meat can be made safe by processing, it will be used in a product that is thoroughly cooked. If it is recalled for a problem like improper labeling it can be relabeled."
(As mentioned above, the CSPI reports that inaccurate and misleading labeling is still a problem)
Yes, the beef is not destroyed by the large manufacturers - it is back on the supermarket shelf in those cooked canned products with beef and those frozen products with beef. No labeling is required so we don't know exactly who is using the recalled product. And we also know why irradiation is so important for American food products. If you google or yahoo recalled beef there will be hundreds of reports about millions of pounds of recalled beef - and for years, much of it winding up in schools.