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Shannon Weidemann
Shannon Weidemann
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Recalled Beef Served in New York City Schools

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A massive recall involving 143 million pounds of beef is affecting the New York City Public School System. The recalled beef was obtained through the National School Lunch Program and served in school cafeterias.

News of a “hold” on beef prompted the New Yory City’s Department of Education to “take it upon ourselves as a precaution to stop serving hamburgers,” a spokesperson for the department said in an e-mail. This meat, part of the National School Lunch Program, has been removed from schools and destroyed, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture statement.

SchoolFood, a branch of the DOE, received notice of the recall Sunday. Beef from Hallmark/Westland is provided free of cost to the schools by the USDA, and makes up about 25 percent of the beef served in New York City public school cafeterias.

The beef was recalled after video was released by the Humane Society showing workers at the Hallmark/Westland slaughterhouse forcing cows that could not walk to move. Those cows should not have entered the food supply. Company officials are trying to assure the public that the risk is low from consuming the meat, but there is an increased risk of mad cow disease in cow’s that cannot walk. It is believed most of the beef in the recall has already been eaten. There have been no reports of illness from the recalled beef.