Don’t eat that chicken salad, without checking to see if your sandwich is part of a huge recall.
Boston Salad and Provisions Company Inc. is recalling hundreds of thousands of pounds of pre-packaged chicken salad because of the possibility of Listeria contamination. Listeria is a bacteria that causes an infection called Listeriosis, which can be harmful, especially to pregnant women, older adults, newborns, and people with weakened immune systems.
The Chicken Salad Recall: What You Need to Know
Boston Salad and Provisions Company is recalling 222,959 pounds of ready-to-eat chicken salad that were produced between August 23, 2013 and October 14, 2013, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The manufacturer shipped these ready-to-eat products to wholesalers for further distribution in the Massachusetts and New Hampshire areas.
Is My Chicken Salad Contaminated?
Here is what you need to look for to determine if your chicken salad is part of the recall:
- Sell by date: 9/13/2013 through 11/4/2013. Even though some of these products may have expired already, the Food Safety Inspection Service is concerned that people may have put the chicken salad in their freezers.
- Check the establishment number, “P-17999” which can be found inside the USDA mark of inspection on the product.
- The recall includes the following brands, Boston Salads, Dietz & Watson, Market Source, Price Chopper, Northern Haserot, and Rachel’s Gourmet.
If you have a product that is subject to recall, don’t eat it – throw it away. If you have questions, Boston Salads asks you to call their Sales Department at (617) 307-6340, ext. 21.
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Listeria in Chicken Salad
Health officials first detected the problem when the New Hampshire Department of Public Health (NHDPH) tested two samples that came back positive for Listeria.
The NHDPH then alerted the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MADPH), who tested two samples which also had a positive result.
Listeria monocytogenes is a bacteria that can cause an infection called Listeriosis. People who are at the highest risk are mainly pregnant women, young children, and those with compromised immune systems, but you can get sick even if you don’t have these risk factors.
Most cases of Listeriosis spread beyond the gastrointestinal tract and cause severe illness. In pregnant women, a severe case can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery, or a life-threatening infection in newborns. In people other than pregnant women, a severe case can lead to stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions. Doctors can treat listeriosis with an antibiotic, so contact a health provider if you think you have eaten food that has been contaminated with Listeria. However, according to the USDA, there have been no reports of illness with the chicken salad recall.
Recalled Chicken Salad: Don’t Eat It
Although there have not been any reports of illnesses associated with this chicken salad recall, it is still important to check the labels of your chicken salad. This is not the first time that there have been food products contaminated with Listeria; back in July, Whole Foods recalled a brand of cheese called Crave Brothers Les Freres because some people got sick after eating the cheese. When there’s a food recall, don’t eat the food – even if it still looks fine.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Listeria. (2013). Accessed October 28, 2013.
Food Safety. Listeria. Accessed October 28, 2013.
USDA. Massachusetts Firm Recalls USDA-Regulated Ready-To-Eat Products for Possible Listeria Contamination. (2013). Accessed October 28, 2013.© Copyright 2013 Janelle Vaesa, MPH, All rights Reserved. Written For: Decoded Science