Four Edmontonians became ill with E. coli O157:H7 after consuming Kirkland brand Strip Loin Grilling Steaks purchased from Costco Wholesale store #156 in Edmonton, Alberta. The beef originated from XL Foods processing plant in Brooks, Alberta.
CBC News reports that Alberta Health Services confirmed the connection after testing a steak provided by one of the outbreak victims. Officials are suggesting that the pathogen may have been introduced into the meat during a tenderizing process that is used by Costco stores in Alberta.
The steaks implicated in the four illnesses were identified by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency as Strip Loin Grilling Steak prepared and sold in variable weight packages from Costco Wholesale store #156, located at 13650, 50th street, Edmonton, Alberta, bearing Packed On dates 12/SE/04, 12/SE/05, 12/SE/06 or 12/SE/07. At the moment, only steaks from this one Costco store are affected.
No direct link has been established between the illnesses and the XL Foods plant that supplied the beef.
XL Food’s Brooks processing facility is the source of meat that has been under a steadily expanding series of recall notices across Canada, and a series of Public Health Alerts in the USA. The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service detected E. coli O157:H7 in beef trimmings from XL Foods that were shipped from Canada to the USA.
There is no indication, either in the CBC report or from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, as to whether the outbreak strain recovered from the steak in Edmonton is the same as the strain of E. coli O157:H7 found in XL’s beef trimmings.
For a consolidated list of beef products affected by the XL Foods recall, and information on retail distribution in Canada and the USA, please consult the Canada/USA Beef Recall tab.