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Can I Sue if Recalled Beef Caused E. coli Food Poisoning?

If there is evidence to support your E. coli poisoning claim, yes. You may also have claims against other facilities, including grocery stores or restaurants. Below is one ground beef recall linked to an outbreak of E. coli illnesses.

E coli
Low-temperature electron micrograph of a cluster of E. coli bacteria.

J.B. Meats E. coli Outbreak

Two people have been sickened with E. coli poisoning after consuming ground beef processed by J. B. Meats, a Cincinnati, Ohio establishment. In response to this outbreak, J. B. Meats recalled ground beef distributed to restaurants in the Cincinnati, Ohio area. This outbreak occurred in May of 2011.

J.B. Meats Ground Beef Recall Information

ground-beef-poJ. B. Meats recalled about 72,800 pounds of ground beef products due to possible contamination with E. coli O157:H7. The products subject to the J.B. Meats recall are 5 and 10 pound clear packages of ground beef and ground beef patties in various size packages that were processed on and can be identified by the dates Aug. 18, 2010 through Aug. 18, 2011.

Each clear plastic bag and label holding the beef bear the establishment number “EST. 1188” within the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s mark of inspection. The recalled ground beef products were sold to restaurants in the Cincinnati area, but the company did not say which restaurants.

J.B. Meats said it was notified on Aug. 12, 2011 of an investigation of two E. coli O157:H7 illnesses. The Cincinnati Health Department reported that two patients who became ill on July 20 and 21 may have been sickened from ground beef consumed on July 16 and 17.

Epidemiological and microbiological evidence points to a possible link between the ground beef products produced by J.B. Meats on July 15 and the illnesses in Cincinnati, Ohio. The company said the recall is precautionary, as there has been no conclusive link between the illnesses and the ground beef produced at the facility.

E. coli O157 can cause hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP). These complications are both severe illnesses that can cause kidney failure, central nervous system damage (seizures, stroke, paralysis, etc.), heart failure, pancreatitis, and death.