Dutch Prime Foods, Inc., a Long Branch, New Jersey firm, is recalling approximately 345 pounds of ground beef products because they may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced today.

These packages of ground beef were packed in 5- and 10-pound shipping cases which bear the establishment number "EST. 5206" inside the USDA mark of inspection.

These ground beef products were produced on Nov. 18 and distributed to restaurants in New Jersey.

The problem was discovered through a routine FSIS sampling procedure. FSIS has received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of this product. Anyone with signs or symptoms of foodborne illness should consult a medical professional.

E. coli O157:H7 is a potentially deadly bacterium that can cause bloody diarrhea, dehydration, and in the most severe cases, kidney failure. The very young, seniors and persons with weak immune systems are the most susceptible to foodborne illness.

Consumers and media with questions about the recall should contact company Secretary-Treasurer Ron Orzechowski at (732) 222-0910.

Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.