Iowa company recalls chicken salad amid Salmonella outbreak

A week after Iowa health officials put out a public health warning about chicken salad sickening people with Salmonella, the USDA-regulated manufacturer is recalling the product.

Triple T Specialty Meats Inc. of Ackley, IA, on Wednesday recalled about 20,600 pounds of ready-to-eat chicken salad made for Fareway Stores Inc. amidst a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium, according to the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

Outbreak cases are being reported in all five states where Fareway stores sold the implicated chicken salad. Iowa has the most with 115 cases reported. Minnesota, Illinois and Nebraska each have one reported case. South Dakota has two reported cases.

The FSIS and the company are concerned that some of the product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers.

“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,” according to the recall notice.

The recalled ready-to-eat chicken salad was produced on various dates between Jan. 2 and Feb. 7. The following products are subject to the recall:

  • 3950 lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/02/18.
  • 1250 lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/03/18.
  • 3700 lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/12/18.
  • 2010-lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/19/18.
  • 3660-lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/24/18.
  • 2770-lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 01/31/18.
  • 3290-lbs. of two 5 lb. bags with “CHICKEN SALAD, PACKED FOR FAREWAY WHOLESALE COMPANY” on the label with a pack date of 02/07/18.

The recalled products bear establishment number “P-21011” printed inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to Fareway grocery stores in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska and South Dakota.

On Feb. 9, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s FSIS received notification from health officials in Iowa about an investigation of Salmonella Typhimurium illnesses. The Iowa Department of Public Health, Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, and Iowa State Hygienic Laboratory determined that there is a link between the chicken salad from Triple T Specialty Meats Inc. and this outbreak.

Based on an epidemiological investigation, 37 confirmed cases and 78 probable cases have been identified in Iowa, with illness onset dates ranging from Jan. 14 to Feb. 6. Results are pending on whether the outbreak strain is resistant to antibiotics.

The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals and Department of Public Health issued a joint consumer advisory about the Salmonella infections on Feb. 13, urging consumers to throw away any chicken salad from Fareway stores. The chicken salad product subject to recall was sold from Jan. 4 to Feb. 9 in various weight containers in the deli sections of Fareway grocery stores.

FSIS continues to work with state and federal health officials to determine if there are additional illnesses linked to this product.

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 illness usually lasts four to seven days.

Most people recover without treatment. In some persons, however, 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 healthcare provider.

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