School beef not tainted
By Kathryn Purcell
"Where's the beef?"
Not in Morgan County schools.
The recent recall of more than 143 million pounds of beef products, produced by Chino, Calif.-based Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Company, is affecting school lunchrooms nationwide.
The Westland Company beef products were bought for Federal food and nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch Program, according to a release from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service Web site, www.fsis.usda.gov.
Morgan County School Nutrition Director Phyllis Martin heard about the recall early Monday morning, she said, and promptly began a survey of beef products in Morgan County schools. The inspection concluded at 10 a.m. on Tuesday.
"I've checked our ground beef and the products received and none of it matches up with the recall [products]," Martin said. "We don't have any of the ground beef listed in the recall."
Martin added that, unlike some school systems, the Morgan County School System doesn't send the beef they received to another company to be processed into items like beef crumbles or hamburger patties. Therefore, there is no risk of contamination from processing either.
For more information on the recalled beef products, visit the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service Web site.