The New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand last week tabled a bill to overhaul the US food safety system – calling the clause to oblige mandatory testing for E.coli in ground beef the cornerstone of the legislation. There is currently no federal requirement for grinders to test their ingredients for E. coli, she added.
The new legislation that would require all plants that process ground beef to test their products regularly before it is ground and again before it is combined with other beef or ingredients, such as spices, and packaged. If ground beef is found to be contaminated, the bill requires the company to properly dispose of the contaminated batch, or cook the meat to a temperature that destroys the E.coli.
An industry-wide sampling of all ground beef produced, the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service in 2009 found that nearly one in every 300 samples of ground beef was contaminated with E.coli, said Gillibrand.
Ground beef is especially vulnerable to E.coli because its source material is not from a single cut of meat but from a compilation of trimmings from many parts, including fat that lies near the surface of possibly contaminated hide.
Fuente: Food Quality News.