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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Retailer Recall in Motion and Inspectors being Shocked

Carrie Peyton Dahlberg of the Sacramento Bee and I spoke yesterday about the fallout of the nations largest meat recall. As she has said “from soup to jerky, the list of products made with recalled beef has been growing, and messages to consumers have gotten ever more confusing. Makers of kitchen standbys like Hunt’s spaghetti sauce and Hot Pockets have asked grocery stores to yank selected items from their shelves – but aren’t telling anyone at home to clean out their pantries. As regulators and businesses cope with the nation’s biggest beef recall, the trade offs of cost and risk seem to be getting murkier instead of clearer.”  It is interesting to see a "retailer recall" – products in stores, but not a "consumer recall" – product that you might have at home to eat.  Hmmm, how much sense is this making?

As I told her:

"You can’t run away from the video of horrifically treated animals," said food safety attorney William Marler. "That, combined with a lot of the product going to school districts – the political pressure was too much."  Marler, a Seattle lawyer with a national reputation representing people sickened by bad food, fears "a lot of resources are being wasted on this recall" that could be better spent combating more serious dangers.

In an interesting twist, Victoria Kim of the Los Angeles Times wrote: “Chino beef inspectors put on leave.”  At least two federal inspectors who worked at the now-shuttered Chino plant at the center of the largest-ever beef recall have been put on paid leave, union officials said today.