More than 400 ready-to-eat foods recalled for fear of listeria contamination: NPR
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More than 400 food items — including ready-to-eat sandwiches, salads, yogurts and wraps — have been recalled due to possible listeria contamination, the Food and Drug Administration announced Friday.
The recall by Baltimore-based Fresh Ideation Food Group affects products sold Jan. 24 through Jan. 30 in Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, North Carolina. South, Virginia and Washington, DC. , no cases of illness had been reported, according to the company’s announcement.
“The recall was initiated after the company’s environmental samples tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes“, reads the announcement.
The products are sold under dozens of different brand names, but all recalled products say Fresh Creative Cuisine at the bottom of the label and have a “fresh” or “sale” date of Jan. 31 through Feb. 6.
If you purchased any of the affected products, which you can find here, you should contact the company at 855-969-3338.
Eating foods contaminated with listeria can cause severe infection with symptoms such as fever, headache, stiffness, nausea, and diarrhea as well as miscarriages and stillbirths in pregnant women. Symptoms usually appear one to four weeks after eating food contaminated with listeria, but they can appear sooner or later, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Pregnant women, newborns, adults over 65, and people with weakened immune systems are most likely to get seriously ill, according to the CDC.
Ready-to-eat food products such as deli meats and cheese are particularly susceptible to listeria and other bacteria. If food is not kept at the correct temperature throughout distribution and storage, if it is mishandled, or if it was not cooked to the correct temperature to begin with, bacteria can multiply, even when refrigerated.
The added risk with ready-to-eat foods is that “people aren’t going to take a lethal step,” like cooking, that kills dangerous bacteria, says Darin Detwiler, a professor of food policy at Northeastern University.
Detwiler says social media has “played a big role in that consumers know a lot more about food safety,” citing recent high-profile food safety issues with products recommended and then warned by influencers.
“Consumer demand is forcing businesses to make changes, and it’s forcing policymakers to support new policies” that make our food supply safer, he says.