JF O'Neill Packing Company, of Nebraska, said tonsils may not have been removed from the tongues. Under US regulations, tonsils are considered a SRM and must be removed from cattle of all ages in accordance with FSIS regulations. The body prohibits SRMs from use as human food to minimize potential human exposure to the BSE agent.
SRMs are tissues that are known to contain the infective agent in cattle infected with Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), as well as materials that are closely associated with these potentially infective tissues.
The company is recalling all products packed between July 1, 2009, and October 8, 2009. These products were shipped primarily to distribution centres in Nebraska and California for further sale to restaurants, hotels and institutions.