The answer would be yes – “Costco steaks linked to 4 Edmonton E. coli cases.”
XL Foods Meat was “produced under insanitary conditions.”
Yesterday, Matt McClure of the Calgary Herald reported:
No deaths have been linked to the contaminated meat, but Alberta’s health authority said Tuesday it is now investigating eight cases of illness from E. coli O157, including three in Calgary, that could be related.
Early this morning FSIS updated its Public Health Alert for Imported Canadian Beef from XL Foods:
FSIS has reason to believe, based on information provided by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), that beef from cattle slaughtered during the period associated with the recall was produced under insanitary conditions that resulted in a high event period (a period when the trim from carcasses exhibited an unusually high frequency of positive findings for the possible presence of E. coli O157:H7). Therefore, all products that are non-intact, such as trim and ground beef subject to the recall, as well as all cuts of beef that will be processed into non-intact product, are considered adulterated.
FSIS testing of raw boneless beef trim product from Canadian Establishment 038, XL Foods, Inc., and confirmed positive for E. coli O157:H7 on September 3, 2012. After alerting the CFIA of the positive results, the agencies launched an investigation including additional testing, and CFIA announced a recall by XL Foods, Inc. of a variety of ground beef products on Sept. 16. FSIS also issued a Public Health Alert (PHA) on September 20, 2012, provided updated information on September 21, 2012, conducted effectiveness checks this week, and notified the public once more through today’s PHA. The CFIA has expanded the scope of the recall to now include the production dates of Aug. 24, Aug. 27, Aug. 28 and Aug. 29, 2012 and FSIS has determined that a slaughter date of August 23, 2012 is common to all four production dates.
While the investigation continues, FSIS will provide information as it becomes available. The products subject to the Canadian recall were distributed to U.S. establishments in the following states: California, Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin. FSIS will continue to update the retail distribution list posted on FSIS’ website at www.fsis.usda.gov/FSIS_Recalls/Open_Federal_Cases/index.asp.
Public health authorities on both sides of the border should release information about the genetic fingerprint (PFGE pattern) of both the positive FSIS beef samples and the ill persons in Canada – and elsewhere.