Key Concepts

  • Ground meat is more hazardous than whole muscle meat.
  • Microbial hazard of greatest concern in ground beef is E. coli O157:H7.
  • There is zero tolerance for E. coli O157:H7 in ground meat.
  • Temperature control and sanitation are primary controls for E. coli O157:H7.
  • Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOPs) detail procedures and frequency.
  • Grinding records should indicate the source of each lot ground.
  • Product must being handled correctly throughout the entire process for best quality and optimal safety of the product.
  • A safe food-handling label is required on all raw or partially pre-cooked meat and poultry products.
  • Ground beef is sampled by the USDA on a random basis for E. coli 0157:H7.
  • Irradiated ground beef can improve the quality and safety of food.

Learning Objectives

After this training you should be able to:

  1. Know and understand measures to control food safety hazards in ground beef.
  2. Explain procedures to control E. coli O157:H7.
  3. Explain why ground meat is more hazardous than whole muscle meat.
  4. Understand the considerations for irradiated ground beef.
  5. Consider the usefulness of record keeping for trace backs, recalls, and investigations.

Training Tools

  • Additional Support Materials

Note: Minnesota Food Code regulations are cited in this guide. Refer to your regulatory authority.