BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) -- State health officials say lead was found in nearly 6 percent of the samples from venison processed last fall under new state recommendations.

Sandi Washek, the Health Department's lead coordinator, said 404 samples of ground venison were checked from 54 meat processors across North Dakota.

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The state Agriculture Department last year published recommendations to encourage more precautions in butchering venison.

Washek says state health officials continue to recommend that pregnant women and children younger than 6 avoid meat from deer killed with lead bullets. Washek says health officials recommend that ``everybody else use their judgment to minimize their exposure.'