In its largest recall ever, Milwaukee-based Emmpak Foods is recalling 2.8 million pounds of ground beef that was sent to 48 states.
The plant is shut down while inspectors try to find out what caused the contamination and how widespread the bad hamburger really is.
The plant is linked to an E. coli outbreak in three states that sickened more than 50 people.
“It really represents all the production from that plant for the entire week. Friday’s recall was limited to one production line and after we reviewed, we thought it prudent to recall all the product from that plant from the entire week,” Emmpak Foods President Justin Segal said.
Last Friday, Emmpak recalled 400,000 pounds of ground beef
Most of that beef was sold in Wisconsin grocery stores, like Roundy’s Pick ‘n Save. But this recall goes much farther, touching 48 states and consumers in grocery stores, restaurants, hotels, prisons, hospitals, daycare centers and institutions around the country.
But while Emmpak is recalling 2.8 million pounds of beef, the president wants to point out not all that is tainted with E. coli.
“This illness, since its point source came from one of those four days, if it came from us, and probably one hour in the four days, there might have been 10,000 pounds of beef that was bad that affected people, if that,” Segal said.
The plant will remain closed until the company targets the problem and makes sure no more tainted meat will go through the system. That could be a day, a week or more.
The sell by dates are Sept. 5 through Sept. 8. They have the USDA No. 20654.