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Massive Canadian beef recall expands to US

Credits: REUTERS/JEFF HAYNES

A massive recall of Canadian beef has spread to the US, where the Food Safety and Inspection Service says products known or suspected to be tainted with E. coli were distributed in eight states.

FSIS said it alerted its Canadian counterpart after its testing of raw boneless beef trim from Edmonton-based XL Foods came out positive for E. coli on Sept. 3.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a recall Sunday, then expanded it twice during the week to include dozens of products - including ground beef, burgers, meat loaf, sausages and beef jerky - from major grocery chains in the country.

Alberta Health Services is currently investigating four recent cases of people falling ill from E. coli, including a four-year-old girl suffering from kidney failure. The agency is trying to determine if the cases are linked to the recalled products.

FSIS said beef from XL was shipped to California, Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin and may have been processed into various products.

"FSIS is working to confirm that actions are being taken to remove the product from commerce," the agency said in its health alert issued Friday.

Food contaminated with E. coli may not look or smell spoiled, but consuming it can cause serious and potentially life-threatening illnesses.

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