Nearly 15,000 Pounds Of Beef Sticks Recalled Over Undeclared Allergen

A Wisconsin meat processor is recalling 14,976 pounds of beef sticks after failing to declare milk as an allergen on the product label. According to a report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), Abbyland Foods of Abbotsford, Wisconsin is recalling its 2-pound clear plastic packages of "Iowa Smokehouse Original Smoked Beef Sticks" with sell-by dates of November 15, 2022 and November 17, 2022 and an establishment number of 1633B.

"The problem was discovered after the firm received consumer complaints of cheese in the product and reported the event to FSIS," the service said, noting that although the beef sticks were shipped to retailers nationwide, there haven't been any confirmed reports of adverse reactions from consuming them. Several news outlets initially reported that the meat was sold at Walmart, including Newsweek, but the retailer didn't have the news on its list of food recalls at the time it was announced. 

The news of the beef stick recall comes just days after Oregon-based Interstate Meat Distributors recalled more than 28,000 pounds of ground beef that may be contaminated with E. coli. Walmart posted that recall on January 7, a day after the Food Safety and Inspection Service reported it.

Dairy allergies can be severe

A dairy allergy is different than lactose intolerance, WebMD explains. The former is a problem with the immune system while the latter is a problem with the digestive system and lactose intolerance isn't dangerous. Meanwhile, an allergic reaction to cow's milk can be serious and in rare cases, fatal. Symptoms include hives, upset stomach, vomiting, bloody stools, and anaphylaxis, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition that can send someone into shock, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. A reaction to cow's milk is the most common food allergy for infants and young children, and it is one of the most common in adults, according to Food Allergy Research & Education.

In its announcement about the beef stick recall, the FSIS said it is worried consumers may have some of the meat in their pantries or refrigerators. "Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them," the service said. "These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase."