Over 4,000 pounds of beef has been recalled by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for fear it has been contaminated by mad cow disease, some of which was sent to Whole Foods.
The possibly infected meat, which was sold in the form of one-in rib-eye roasts, made its way into 34 Whole Foods stores in the Northeastern area of the US. It also made its way into a restaurant in New York City and a restaurant in Kansas City, MO.
The situation has been labeled by the USDA as a low-risk, class two recall. Currently, no illnesses have been reported.
The recalled beef was processed at Fruitland American Meat in Jackson, Mo, and was packaged between September 2013 and April 2014. Both bone-in Rain Crow Ranch Ribeye and quartered beef carcasses have been recalled. They both have the establishment number of 2316.
Fruitland American Meat’s slaughter logs indicated that the cows being turned into beef were not in compliance with USDA regulations. They still had their dorsal root ganglia, and the USDA requires its full removal in cows over 30 months old.
The dorsal root ganglia is labeled as a specific risk material, or a SRM.
“SRMs are tissues that may contain the infective agent in cattle infected with Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), as well as materials that are closely associated with these potentially infective tissues,” said the USDA in a statement.
A USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service public health veterinarian inspected all the cows in question, yet found no trace of mad cow disease.
Mad cow disease, which is officially known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, is a disease that attacks the brain. It can cause dementia, memory loss, hallucination, psychosis, and other mind altering changes. It is fatal, as there is not cure for it.