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Cargill Meat Solutions Corporation is recalling approximately 36 million pounds of ground turkey products that may be contaminated with a multi-drug resistant strain of Salmonella Heidelberg, the U.S.D.A’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today. The products are believed to be linked to at least one known death.
The products subject to recall today bear the establishment number “P-963” inside the USDA mark of inspection, and include the following:
Ground Turkey Chubs – Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11
85% Ground Turkey – Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11
93% Ground Turkey – Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11
Frozen Ground Turkey – Production Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/2/11
These products were distributed nationwide. A multi-state outbreak of antibiotic-resistant Salmonella Heidelberg believed to be caused by eating contaminated ground turkey has sickened 79 people and resulted in one death in California. Some 26 states have reported illness between March 1 and Aug. 1, the CDC said earlier this week.
As a result of the epidemiologic and traceback investigations, as well as in-plant findings, FSIS determined that there is a link between the Cargill ground turkey products and this illness outbreak. FSIS is continuing to work with CDC, affected state public health partners, and the company on the investigation.
To prevent salmonellosis and other foodborne illnesses, wash hands with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds before and after handling raw meat and poultry, and cook poultry—including ground turkey—to 165° F, as determined with a food thermometer. Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. Salmonella infections can be life-threatening, especially to those with weak immune systems, such as infants, the elderly, and persons with HIV infection or undergoing chemotherapy. The most common manifestations of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within six to 72 hours. Additional symptoms may be chills, headache, nausea and vomiting that can last up to seven days.
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