|Food Safety and Inspection
United States Department of Agriculture
Washington, D.C. 20250-3700
Media Communications Office
(202) 720-9113; FAX: (202) 690-0460
Contact: Elizabeth Gaston
The recalled meat and poultry products have a "sell-by" date of "Jun 23," on the package and also bear "EST 1246" in the USDA inspection mark. (Attached is a list of specific products.)
The products were sliced and packaged on May 4, 1999, and distributed within Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, and New Jersey.
FSIS discovered the problem through its routine monitoring program. A sample was found positive for Listeria monocytogenes on May 12, 1999.
"Because of the potential for foodborne illness, we urge consumers who have purchased the suspect product not to eat it and to return it to the point of purchase," said Thomas J. Billy, administrator of USDAs Food Safety and Inspection Service.
Consumption of foods contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, an uncommon but potentially serious disease. Healthy people rarely contract listeriosis. The most common manifestation of listeriosis is meningitis, which has symptoms of high fever, severe headache, neck stiffness, and nausea. Listeriosis can also cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women, as well as serious and sometimes fatal infections in those with weak immune systems--newborns, the frail or elderly, and persons with chronic disease, HIV infection, or taking chemotherapy.
No illnesses associated with consumption of the recalled product have been reported to FSIS. Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a physician immediately.
People with questions about the recall may contact the company at 252-792-8137. .
Consumers with food safety questions may phone the toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-800-535-4555. The hotline is staffed from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time), Monday through Friday and recorded information is available 24 hours a day.
NOTE: Access news releases and other information at the FSIS Web site on the World Wide Web at http://www.fsis.usda.gov
Note to Editors: Media inquiries to White Packing Company should be directed to David Burroughs at 252-792-8137.
List of Luncheon Meats Recalled by White Packing Company on May 14, 1999
For Further Information, Contact:
Consumers: Meat and Poultry Hotline, 1-800-535-4555 (voice); 1-800-256-7072 (TTY)
Media: (202) 720-9113
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