The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company is voluntarily recalling all blends of its store made fresh ground beef and patties sold to customers between July 22, 2000 and August 2, 2000, from stores in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island, after learning that the product may be contaminated with E. coli 0157:H7. The recall is part of a larger scale announcement made by the Moyer Packing Company (MOPAC) on August 5, 2000, which involves several retailers. Laboratory tests by the United States Department of Agriculture confirmed the presence of the bacteria during random sampling of beef from the Moyer Packing Company (MOPAC). No regulatory agency has confirmed the presence of E coli 0157:H7 in any product sold at Stop & Shop.Because of the potential hazard of foodborne disease, any customer who purchased the product between July 22, 2000 and August 2, 2000, and has a portion of it remaining, should remove it from the freezer and return it to the store for a full refund. Customers with questions may call Stop & Shop's Consumer Relations Department at 1-800-767-7772.As a precautionary measure, Stop & Shop removed the product from its shelves on August 3, after notification from its supplier about the unconfirmed presence of E. coli 0157:H7. Over the past three years, random beef sampling at Stop & Shop stores by the United States Department of Agriculture has produced negative results for E. coli 0157:H7.E. coli 0157:H7 is an organism that may cause serious illness in small children, frail or elderly people and those with weakened immune systems. Consumers can protect themselves from E. coli 0157:H7 by cooking ground beef to 160 degrees internal temperature. Healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and/or diarrhea. Pregnant women should consult their physician. For further information on safe food handling, visit the Fight Bac! Website at