Taco Bell recalls 2.3M pounds of seasoned beef from restaurants in Illinois, 20 other states

The company said metal shavings may have contaminated the beef.

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Months after some Taco Bell locations were hit by a tortilla shortage, now some consumers are asking, “Where’s the beef?”

The company said in a news release Monday that on Friday it “took immediate action and voluntarily recalled approximately 2.3 million pounds of seasoned beef from its restaurants and distribution centers.”

The beef was removed and discarded in restaurants in “21 states across the eastern Midwest, northern Southeast and Northeast regions,” the company said.

“Nothing is more important than our customers’ safety, and nothing means more to us than their trust,” said Julie Masino, Taco Bell’s president of North America, in the release. “As soon as we received the first consumer complaint, we immediately acted to remove the product from the affected restaurants and proactively worked with the supplier to inform the USDA of our steps to protect our guests.”

On Monday, the Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service announced some of Taco Bell’s seasoned beef products sent to restaurants nationwide have been recalled because they “may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically metal shavings.”

According to the USDA, Columbus, Ohio-based Kenosha Beef International is recalling “an undetermined amount of seasoned beef products,” which were produced on various dates from Sept. 20 to Oct. 4. 

There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products, according to the USDA.

According to Taco Bell, the product was produced at one plant location on only one of the two lines used to make seasoned beef and was sent to distribution centers in Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Virginia.

On Saturday, Taco Bell said restaurants in some states were asking customers to try chicken or steak in their burritos after quality concerns pushed it to temporarily stop serving seasoned beef.

The company said it told affected restaurants to stop serving seasoned beef as it replenishes supplies because the beef didn’t meet its quality standards.

Affected locations were in Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and elsewhere, though the company did not say Saturday how many stores were no longer serving seasoned beef.

Customers have been complaining on Twitter about not being able to find ground beef. In a statement Saturday, the company apologized for any inconvenience.

Consumers with questions about the recall can call 1-800-TACOBELL, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. PT Monday through Friday. 

Contributing: Associated Press

Read more at USAToday.com.

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