60,000 Pounds of Chicken Recalled Over Salmonella Contamination Fears

Serenade Foods has issued a recall for close to 60,000 lbs of frozen raw breaded stuffed chicken products due to a possible Salmonella Enteritidis contamination.

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) first released a public health alert and announced an investigation into the possible contamination on June 2 "to remind consumers about the proper handling and cooking of raw poultry products."

At the time, the FSIS collected various chicken products, including breaded, raw, frozen and stuffed varieties from a retail store for testing after receiving reports of illnesses between February 21 and May 7.

Following the investigation, Serenade Foods announced via a FSIS statement on August 9 that it was issuing a recall for "approximately 59,251 pounds of frozen, raw, breaded and pre-browned stuffed chicken products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Enteritidis."

The products recalled included Milford Valley items, Chicken with Broccoli and Cheese and Chicken Cordon Bleu, and two Krikwood products, Raw Stuffed Broccoli and Cheese and Raw Stuffed Chicken Cordon Bleu, that were produced between February 24 and 25 2021.

Dutch Farms Chicken with Broccoli & Cheese has also been recalled, with the FSIS confirming that all of the items were shipped to stores across the country.

The investigation found that 28 people in eight states were confirmed to have become ill following consumption of the products, with eight people hospitalized. No deaths have been reported in connection with the outbreak.

The department investigated the reported Salmonella Enteritidis illnesses alongside the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local health partners from the areas where the contaminations were recorded.

The officials collected unopened and intact packages of raw, frozen, and breaded chicken stuffed with broccoli and cheese from the house of one of the ill people and found that it tested positive for an outbreak of Salmonella Enteritidis.

According to the FSIS, "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 eating the contaminated product."

The agency states that the illness normally lasts between four to seven days and confirms that most people recover without needing treatment. However, the recall release warns that "older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness."

The FSIS issued the recall on Monday as it is concerned that some of the Serenade Foods chicken products could still be in the freezers of some U.S. residents, with the agency urging anyone with the products to throw them away or return the items to the place of purchase.

Salmonella recalls are common in the U.S., as several lots of frozen cooked shrimp were recalled nationwide at major grocers in June after they were found to be contaminated.

The CDC stated that six people were infected with the contamination, with four in Nevada and two more in Arizona. There were two hospitalizations and zero deaths.

While McCormick & Company issued a voluntary recall of four of its seasoning products "due to possible contamination with Salmonella," late last month.

The recalled items included three from McCormick and one from the Frank's RedHot brand, which is owned by McCormick. No illnesses have been reported so far in connection with the recall.

Newsweek has contacted Serenade Foods and the FSIS for comment.

Frozen chicken recall
File photo of fried breaded chicken breasts, a whole one and a sliced one on a black stone plate. Serenade Foods has issued a recall for close to 60,000 lbs of frozen raw breaded stuffed chicken products due to a possible salmonella enteritidis contamination. from_my_point_of_view/iStock / Getty Images Plus