A California meat-packer has announced the largest U.S. beef recall. Reuters reports:
Hallmark/Westland Meat Packing Co voluntarily recalled all of its beef produced since February 1, 2006. USDA said Hallmark violated rules against the slaughter of "downer cattle" -- that is, animals too ill to walk.Whether you eat beef or not, do you really want to eat sick beef?
"This is the largest beef recall in the history of the United States, unfortunately," said Agriculture Undersecretary Richard Raymond.
Based in Chino, California, Hallmark/Westland has been closed since early February. Company officials were not immediately available for comment.
The Humane Society of the United States showed videotapes on January 30 showing workers at the plant using several abusive techniques to make animals stand up and pass a pre-slaughter inspection. These included ramming cattle with forklift blades and using a hose to simulate the feeling of drowning.