Recall of Raw, Stuffed Chicken Products Tops 1.7 Million Pounds

FSIS was notified of a cluster of Salmonella Enteritidis illnesses on June 24 and, working with the Minnesota Departments of Health and Agriculture, Wisconsin Department of Health Services, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, determined there is a link between the frozen, raw, stuffed chicken products from Barber Foods and the cluster.

Barber Foods of Portland, Maine, is recalling approximately 1,707,494 pounds of frozen, raw stuffed chicken products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Enteritidis, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced July 12. The recalled products were produced between Feb. 17 and May 20, 2015. "Since the original recall on July 2, 2015, two more case-patients have been identified. The scope of this recall expansion now includes all products associated with contaminated source material," FSIS's news release states.

The initial recall on July 2 involved only about 58,320 pounds of frozen, raw, stuffed chicken items produced on Jan. 29, 2015; Feb. 20, 2015; and April 23, 2015. This is the product subject to the recall: 2-lb. 4-oz. cardboard box containing six individually pouched pieces of "BARBER FOODS PREMIUM ENTREES BREADED-BONELESS RAW STUFFED CHICKEN BREASTS WITH RIB MEAT KIEV" with use by/sell by date of April 28, 2016; May 20, 2016; and July 21, 2016 and Lot Code number 0950292102, 0950512101, or 0951132202. The products bear the establishment number "P-276" inside the USDA mark of inspection.

These products were shipped to U.S. retail locations nationwide and in Canada.

The release says FSIS was notified of a cluster of Salmonella Enteritidis illnesses on June 24 and, working with the Minnesota Departments of Health and Agriculture, Wisconsin Department of Health Services, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, determined there is a link between the frozen, raw, stuffed chicken products from Barber Foods and the cluster. "Based on epidemiological evidence and traceback investigations, six case-patients have been identified in Minnesota and Wisconsin with illness onset dates ranging from April 5, 2015 to June 23, 2015 that link to the specific Barber Foods products. FSIS continues to work with public health partners on this investigation," it says.

Both FSIS and the company are concerned that some of these products may be in consumers' freezers. Although the products subject to recall may appear to be cooked, they are in fact raw "and should be handled carefully to avoid cross-contamination in the kitchen. Particular attention needs to be paid to safely prepare and cook these raw poultry products to a temperature of 165° F checking at the center, the thickest part and the surface of the product," according to FSIS.

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