A store recalled hundreds of pounds of ground beef after finding metal fragments in several packages that likely came from jewelry worn by a worker who was grinding the meat, officials said.

Scott's Food & Pharmacy on Monday recalled lean ground beef products expiring that day and Tuesday. A customer discovered metal fragments in a package of meat, and store workers found metal and plastic bits, some about the size of a pencil eraser, general manager Bill Gillispie said.

"Our guess is the person who did the grinding, something fell off his body," Gillispie said.
The store suspended the worker while the investigation continues.

Company policy forbids employees from wearing loose hanging jewelry or accessories while grinding meat, Gillispie said.

The recall announced Monday involves only the store at 1125 W. State Blvd.

About 205 pounds were pulled from shelves Monday, leaving about 145 pounds unaccounted for, Gillispie said. The recalled products were purchased Sunday or early Monday.

Customers who bought the recalled ground beef products can return them to any Scott's location for an exchange or a refund.

"Our biggest concern is to make sure no one gets hurt," Gillispie said.