FSIS Issues Public Health Alert For Stuffed Chicken Products Due To Possible Salmonella Contamination
Congressional and Public Affairs
Gabrielle N. Johnston
WASHINGTON, September 17, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is alerting consumers that frozen, raw, stuffed and breaded chicken products produced by Aspen Foods, a division of Koch Poultry Company, a Chicago, Ill. establishment have been confirmed as having the same Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak strain which was part of a July 15, 2015 recall.
Following the July 15th recall, FSIS has been conducting intensified sampling at this establishment to ensure that the hazard responsible for the initial contamination has been controlled by Aspen Foods. Results from FSIS sampling revealed twelve positive results that match the outbreak strain of Salmonella Enteritidis to Aspen Foods products. Three illnesses were epidemiologically linked to the original recall on July 15, 2015. FSIS continues to work with public health partners including the Minnesota Departments of Health and Agriculture and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on this ongoing investigation.
FSIS is concerned about all frozen, raw, stuffed and breaded chicken products produced by Aspen Foods between July 30, 2015 and September 17, 2015. The twelve positive samples collected during FSIS’ intensified sampling efforts alerted FSIS to a systemic problem at the establishment. FSIS cannot have confidence in the safety of any products produced after July 30, 2015. In addition to issuing this Alert, FSIS has directed its personnel to detain products covered by this Alert that they find in commerce because the company has refused to recall the products.
The frozen, raw, stuffed and breaded chicken items may include the following brands and be labeled as “chicken cordon bleu,” “chicken Kiev” or “chicken broccoli and cheese” and bear the establishment number “P-1358” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These products were shipped to retail location and food service locations nationwide.
- Antioch Farms
- Buckley Farms
- Centrella Signature
- Chestnut Farms
- Family Favorites
- Koch Foods
- Market Day
- Oven Cravers
- Rosebud Farm
- Safeway Kitchens
These products were labeled with instructions identifying that the product was uncooked (raw) and included cooking instructions for preparation. As stated in the July 15, 2015 Recall Release, some case-patients reported following the cooking instructions on the label and using a food thermometer to confirm that the recommended temperature was achieved. Therefore, FSIS advises consumers not to eat these products. Special attention should be paid by the food service industry and food handlers. Using a food thermometer to properly cook these products will not protect the health of the consuming public.
Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after exposure to the organism. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment. In some persons, however, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact their health care provider.
Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase. FSIS is concerned that some product may be in consumers' freezers. Although the products included in this Alert may appear to be cooked, this product is in fact uncooked (raw) and should be handled carefully to avoid cross-contamination in the kitchen.
Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day. The online Electronic Consumer Complaint Monitoring System can be accessed 24 hours a day at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/reportproblem.
Recommendations for Preventing Salmonellosis:
Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling raw meat and poultry. Also wash cutting boards, dishes and utensils with hot soapy water. Clean up spills right away.
Keep raw meat, fish and poultry away from other food that will not be cooked. Use one cutting board for raw meat, poultry and egg products and a separate one for fresh produce and cooked foods.
Cook raw meat and poultry to safe internal temperatures before eating. The temperature to cook beef, pork, veal & lamb steaks, roasts & chops is 145º F with a 3 minute rest time, and 165º F for poultry, as determined with a food thermometer.
Refrigerate raw meat and poultry within two hours after purchase (one hour if temperatures exceed 90º F). Refrigerate cooked meat and poultry within two hours after cooking.