Was that steak blade tenderized? Consumers and food service need to know, otherwise outside is inside, like hamburger

The risk of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) survival in blade-tenderized beef is a concern for beef processors. This study evaluated the internalization and post-cooking survival of individual STEC serogroups (O157:H7, O26, O45, O103, O111, O121, and O145) in blade-tenderized beef steaks with different quality traits.

needle.tenderize.cr_Strip loins representing four combinations of USDA Quality Grade (Choice or Select) and pH category (High pH or Normal pH) were inoculated (106 log CFU/cm2 attachment) with individual STEC serogroups before storage (14 days), blade tenderization, and cooking (50, 60, 71, or 85 °C).

Serogroup populations on raw steak surfaces and internal cores were determined. Rapid-based methods were used to detect the internal presence of STEC in cooked steaks. Internalization and post-cooking survival varied among STECs. All serogroups, except O45 and O121, were detected in the internal cores of steaks cooked to 50 °C, while O103, O111, and O145 STEC were detected in steaks cooked to 50, 60, and 71 °C.

The influence of beef quality characteristics on the internalization and thermal susceptibility of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) in blade-tenderized beef steaks

Meat Science, Volume 110, December 2015, Pages 85–92, doi:10.1016/j.meatsci.2015.06.014

Corliss, J.C. Brooks, J.N. Martin, A. Echeverry, A.R. Parks, S. Pokharel, M.M. Brashears


Blade-tenderized rib-eye in restaurants may present public health risk; better cooking protocols required

Fate of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in mechanically tenderized beef prime rib following searing, cooking, and holding under commercial conditions

Journal of Food Protection®, Number 3, March 2013, pp. 376-551 , pp. blade.tenderize.prime.rib405-412(8)

Porto-Fett, Anna C.S.; Shoyer, Bradley A.; Thippareddi, Harshavardhan; Luchansky, John B.


We evaluated the effect of commercial times and temperatures for searing, cooking, and holding on the destruction of Escherichia coli O157:H7 (ECOH) within mechanically tenderized prime rib. Boneless beef ribeye was inoculated on the fat side with ca. 5.7 log CFU/g of a five-strain cocktail of ECOH and then passed once through a mechanical tenderizer with the fat side facing upward. The inoculated and tenderized prime rib was seared by broiling at 260°C for 15 min in a conventional oven and then cooked in a commercial convection oven at 121.1°C to internal temperatures of 37.8, 48.9, 60.0, and 71.1°C before being placed in a commercial holding oven maintained at 60.0°C for up to 8 h. After searing, ECOH levels decreased by ca. 1.0 log CFU/g. Following cooking to internal temperatures of 37.8 to 71.1°C, pathogen levels decreased by an additional ca. 2.7 to 4.0 log CFU/g. After cooking to 37.8, 48.9, or 60.0°C and then warm holding at 60.0°C for 2 h, pathogen levels increased by ca. 0.2 to 0.7 log CFU/g. However, for prime rib cooked to 37.8°C, pathogen levels remained relatively unchanged over the next 6 h of warm holding, whereas for those cooked to 48.9 or 60.0°C pathogen levels decreased by ca. 0.3 to 0.7 log CFU/g over the next 6 h of warm holding. In contrast, after cooking prime rib to 71.1°C and holding for up to 8 h at 60.0°C, ECOH levels decreased by an additional ca. 0.5 log CFU/g. Our results demonstrated that to achieve a 5.0-log reduction of ECOH in blade tenderized prime rib, it would be necessary to sear at 260°C for 15 min, cook prime rib to internal temperatures of 48.9, 60.0, or 71.1°C, and then hold at 60.0°C for at least 8 h.