A meat manufacturer that supplies meat products to Wal-Mart has recalled approximately 90,000 pounds of beef patties from the retailer. According to the U.S. Agriculture Department, the beef was recalled due to potential contamination with pieces of wood.
The recalled beef is labeled Sam's Choice Black Angus Vidalia Onion beef patties. The company that manufactures the product is called the Huisken Meat Company, based out of Minnesota. The recall notice was printed in a release issued on Monday. This Sam's Choice brand product is only sold at Wal-Mart stores.
No Reports of Illness So Far
No reports of illness have been confirmed as connected to the contaminated beef patties so far. Wal-Mart, however, has asked all stores to remove the products from shelves and destroy them. A spokesperson for Wal-Mart further said that the retailer is offering a full refund to anyone in possession of the wood material-infused patties.
Huisken Meat was not available to provide any comment on the matter.
Beef patties included in the recall were manufactured from Nov. 19, 2015, to Dec. 9, 2015. The best if used by dates listed on the burgers is anywhere from May 2016 to June 2016.
Sawdust and Wood Pulp in Burgers?
If you've ever eaten a cheap hamburger and thought it tasted like sawdust, you might not be that far off from the truth -- and maybe that's how pieces of wood ended up inside these patties. It has become common practice for meat makers to put a type of food grade wood pulp in hamburgers. In fact, it's one of the "secret" ingredients in Burger King and McDonald's burgers.
Wood pulp ingredients are listed as "cellulose" on burger patties' ingredients lists. Cellulose in food is, at times, derived from wood. Experts say that this cellulose from wood doesn't have any nutritional value, but meat manufacturers say it's "difficult to avoid" putting it in their products. So, the next time you feel like your meat tastes a little too much like sawdust, maybe that's exactly what's going on.
With regard to the Sam's Choice burger recall, we don't know if the wood chips found in them were the result of manufacturers getting a little overzealous with their "wood pulp" additives. But we can thank Wal-Mart for taking proactive steps to recall the patties before anyone was hurt. Injuries could surface down the road, though, and if they do, the victims will have the right to seek justice and financial restitution under the law.
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