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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fearful Portland Beefeaters!

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Wed, Jun 3, 2009 at 12:28 PM

No, not these guys outside the Heathman - you guys in the rest of Portland who have a hankering for hamburgers.

This morning's big Portland headline in the national news is the discovery of E. Coli in Cascade Natural Beef and SP Provisions brand beef. The company is recalling from hotels, restaurants and grocery stores "39,973 pounds of suspect beef" (which is, by the way, how I like to describe muscular firefighter-turned-commissioner Randy Leonard).

When I called SP Provisions for the details of how their burgers got infected with a virus most commonly spread by fecal contamination, I was told that "all the higher ups are in meetings" and too busy to talk to press. They promised to email all the details immediately... that was 29 minutes ago. Thanks for instilling me with the utmost confidence in your operation, guys.

In the meantime, delicious vegan Italian joint Portobella quickly confirms it's "pretty wide open" for reservations tonight.

1:20pm: Here's the update from SP Provisions — if no beef left the plant, like they say, then you're probably safe to keep munching.

As part of SP Provisions and the USDA routine testing on May 29, 2009, we tested a 60-pound sample of previously ground beef that we received from a local distributer. The sample tested positive for E. coli O157:H7.

Although we are confident no contaminated product left our plant, as a precaution only, we are recalling the ground beef within the expanded date range. The ground beef identified under this recall was sent to hotels, restaurants and institutions. The product was not sold to retail grocery chains in Portland.

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