Safeway Canada recalled 45,000 kilograms (99,000 pounds) of ground beef over the weekend saying it feared it was contaminated with E. coli. Safeway was one of several retailers in Canada and the United States to withdraw meat since last Friday because of the bacteria.
One strain of the bacteria (E. coli 0157:H7) can cause dangerous, even life-threatening food poisoning. E. coli O157:H7 is found in the intestinal tract and feces of both animals and man and it can be transmitted from animal to person through food.
E.coli may be present on the surface of meat; when butchers grind whole cuts of meat to make hamburger, the bacteria get dispersed within the meat. Cooking ground meat to a high temperature -- all ground beef products should be cooked to a minimum of 71 degrees Celsius, or 160 degrees Fahrenheit, to destroy E.coli 0157:H7.
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