27 Tons of Turkey Burgers Recalled

Salmonella Sickens 12 in 10 States; Other Raw Turkey Products May Be Recalled

By Daniel J. DeNoon
WebMD Health News

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD

April 4, 2011 - Jennie-O Turkey Store has issued a nationwide recall of 54,960 pounds of frozen turkey burgers because of salmonella contamination.

So far, 12 people in 10 states have been sickened by the Hadar strain of salmonella. At least three of these people, in three different states, ate the Jennie-O products before falling ill.

The recall includes 4-pound boxes of Jennie-O Turkey Store "All Natural Turkey Burgers with seasonings Lean White Meat." Each box contains 12 one-third-pound turkey burgers, each individually wrapped.

All of the products were sold at Sam's Club stores nationwide.

The recalled products have several identifiers:

  • The UPC code 042222 261081
  • A use-by date of "DEC 23 2011" and lot codes of 32710 through 32780 on the side panel of each box just above the tear strip.
  • The establishment number P-7760 within the USDA inspection mark on the front of each box.

The first case in this outbreak of Salmonella serovar Hadar was in December 2010; the most recent was reported March 14 of this year.

An investigation by the CDC and the USDA's Food Safety Inspection Service found three patients in Colorado, Ohio, and Wisconsin who specifically recalled eating the Jennie-O product. Overall, there have been 12 illnesses reported in Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Washington, and Wisconsin.

The Food Safety Inspection Service warns that this recall may be expanded to include other raw turkey products. The CDC and Food Safety Inspection Service investigation continues.

Salmonella bacteria are potentially deadly causes of food poisoning. Very young and very old people, as well as people with compromised immune systems, are most at risk. Common symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within six to 72 hours of eating a contaminated food product. Chills, headache, nausea, and vomiting may also occur; symptoms usually last up to seven days.

Thorough cooking destroys salmonella bacteria. All poultry -- including turkey burgers -- should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. To prevent salmonella infection, people who touch raw poultry or meat should wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; food preparation surfaces should be thoroughly cleansed.

To answer consumer questions, Jennie-O has created a web site at jennieo.com/recall.

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SOURCES: News release, Food Safety Inspection Service, April 1, 2011.Jennie-O web site, accessed April 4, 2011.

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