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Whole Foods Beef Recalled for Possible Mad Cow Risk

Ribeye roasts distributed in New England may contain specified risk materials.

Ribeye roasts distributed to Whole Foods stores in New England may carry risk of mad cow disease.
Ribeye roasts distributed to Whole Foods stores in New England may carry risk of mad cow disease.

Update: June 12, 4 p.m.

Heather McCready of Whole Foods said in an email the remote risk applies to 34 of 383 Whole Foods stores, located in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. 

She said the problem may simply be an issue in documentation, and Whole Foods mandates cattle be processed by the age of 28 months to avoid risk of mad cow disease, which is found in older cattle.

McCready emphasized that "there have been no cases of reported BSE or any other illnesses associated with this product, and no products currently in our stores are affected."

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Ribeye roasts distributed to Whole Foods stores in New England may carry risk of mad cow disease, according to a national recall list that has pointed out 4,012 pounds of beef products that may contain specified risk materials (SRMs).

Fruitland American Meat, in Jackson, Missouri, has recalled the beef because branches of the nervous system, called the dorsal root ganglia, may not have been completely removed from the beef.

Dorsal root ganglia are considered SRMs, and U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service regulations state they must be removed from cattle 30 months and older. SRMs may contain Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), commonly known as mad cow disease.

The recalled beef was produced and packaged between September 2013 and April 2014, and bone-in ribeye roasts were sent to a Whole Foods distribution center in Connecticut that serves stores in New England. The roasts were also sent to a restaurant in New York City.

There have been no reports to FSIS and Fruitland American Meat of bad health reactions to these beef products. This is a Class II recall with a low health risk.

A USDA Class II recall means “this is a health hazard situation where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product.”


According to FSIS, the products subject to recall include:

  • “40-lb. cases containing two, roughly 20-lb. cryovac packages of bone-in “Rain Crow Ranch Ribeye” bearing the establishment number “EST. 2316” inside the USDA mark of inspection with the following production dates: 9/5/13, 9/10/13, 9/11/13, 9/26/13, 10/2/13, 10/3/2013, 11/8/13, 11/22/13, 12/17/13, 12/26/13, 12/27/13,1/16/14, 1/17/14, 1/23/14, 1/31/14, 2/13/14, 2/14/14, 2/21/14, 2/28/14, 3/8/14, 3/20/14, 4/4/14 or 4/25/14 printed on the box.”

  • “Quartered beef carcasses stamped with the USDA mark of inspection and establishment number ‘EST. 2316.’"

Whole Foods Connecticut Locations:
  • Darien
  • Danbury
  • Fairfield
  • Bishops Corner
  • Westport
  • Greenwich
  • Milford
  • West Hartford
  • Glastonbury

Whole Foods Westchester Locations:
  • White Plains
  • Port Chester
  • Yonkers
Jim Eastwood June 13, 2014 at 07:43 AM
Where's the BEEF ??? Mad Cow heck that explains why a Lot of Fairfield residents are acting the way they are!!!!!!
Igor June 13, 2014 at 07:45 AM
I thought the breast feeding mother , well never mind.
Set the Controls June 13, 2014 at 06:04 PM
What symptoms does one look for in humans? Seriously. Why are the ribeye roasts the only cut being recalled? Were these roasts cut from the animals in question and the rest of the carcasses discarded? And, why are we being notified nine months later? Whole Foods might want to check its "aged beef" cabinet. Damage control in full effect.

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