CFIA halts production at XL Foods

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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OTTAWA, Ontario – The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) temporarily suspended XL Foods, Inc.’s operations license because deficiencies in the company’s food safety processes have not been corrected, the agency said.

Following a review of the Edmonton, Alberta-based XL Foods plant where testing revealed E. coli contamination, CFIA concluded the company had not done enough to prevent E. coli contamination.
"The company took initial steps to ensure the safety of food being produced and at the time committed to additional steps to deal with all issues and prevent recurrence," the agency said in a statement. "However, based on information provided by XL Foods, Inc. on September 26, as well as through CFIA inspector oversight, the CFIA has determined that these deficiencies have not been completely corrected.

"To date, the company has not adequately implemented agreed upon corrective actions and has not presented acceptable plans to address longer-term issues," CFIA said.

CFIA detained all products currently at the plant, and the agency will release the products after being tested for E. coli O157:H7. XL Foods has expanded its voluntary recall of raw meat produced on Aug. 24, 27, 28, 29 and Sept. 5, CFIA said. The agency will continue to alert consumers about affected products, which means that a series of recall announcements will come in the future.

"XL Foods Inc. will not resume operations until they have demonstrated that they have fully implemented CFIA's required corrective actions," the agency said.

XL Foods was a supplier to a Costco Wholesale store in Edmonton, where the company’s beef products have been linked to several confirmed illnesses caused by E. coli O157:H7.

Meanwhile, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) of the US Department of Agriculture expanded a health alert for XL Foods products to 30 states.

"Products subject to the recall include, but are not limited to, steaks, roasts, mechanically tenderized steaks and roasts, and ground beef," FSIS said.

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