The saga of the recent discovery of E.coli-tainted beef products as evidenced by 11 victims in 3 provinces and at this present time, already included one in Hongkong and one in Newfoundland continues to grow with no definite resolution yet. Canada only has 2-3 huge meat processing centers responsible for processing and distributing meat all over the country. One of them is the XL Foods Inc.in Brooks,Alberta where it all happened.
The social and political implications are obvious here with the Agricultural Minister being held blame for it and the sudden fear of even touching beef products(steak,roast,etc) from this Alberta center. The timing to warn the Canadian public was delayed by 2 weeks within last month by the CDC(Center for Disease Control) for no clear reason yet the US which imported the beef from Alberta was informed 2 weeks earlier. Huh????? What have the meat inspectors got to say about this?! That Canadians aren’t good enough to be informed early about this and the Americans are? We’re not chopped liver(no pun intended) ,you know.
Possible litigations may follow. Latest update is that the parents of a 5 year old boy had recovered after ingesting cooked yet tainted ground beef in a recent barbecue. It was first discovered when he woke up in the middle of the night in great pain and blood was found in his underpants. His parents reportedly will join in the litigation process to teach the culprits a lesson and not to get away with it.
This unfortunate situation regarding tainted beef is still ongoing until the entire issues are hopefully fully clarified and resolved for the sake of public safety and not at the expense of political expediency.
What to do in the meantime?
Unless you’re a pure vegan or do not take beef for religious/health reasons, avoid eating beef for the meantime until this whole thing blows over.
But knowing human nature,some can’t live without eating beef so one has to take prudent steps so as to skirt this issue.
Inquire where your beef source is from . If the restaurant/fastfood place can’t fully answer your inquiry to your satisfaction,take your business elsewhere. If at a grocery or even local farmer’s market, do the same too. You can’t afford to get timid with them because it’s your health at stake!
If you do buy beef from a reliable source and will be cooking it, cook it well-done. For those folks who love the taste of rare or medium-rare steaks, you can indulge if you’re very confident that your meat source is safe.
Make sure also that you observe all precautions in the kitchen like frequent handwashing everytime you handle raw meat and not using the same chopping board,kitchen utensils,plates,etc. when cooking the meat to prevent any possible Salmonella outbreak.
Bon apetit but with a cautious eye in this case!