Nearly 325,000 pounds of ready-to-eat beef and poultry products have been recalled by a company out of New Jersey, according to a Reuters report from this weekend. No illnesses have been reported as a result of the meat recall, but if you’ve purchased any frozen meatballs or hamburger patties lately, you may want to check your freezer–your food may be tainted with listeria.
The USDA stated in its release on the subject that the meat products’ potential risk was discovered due to routine testing conducted by the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The contamination threat for the impacted products, which were sold and distributed nationwide is listed as “high.”
The manufacturer, Buona Vita Inc., makes a variety of ready-to-eat meat products, including items such as meatloaves, hamburger patties, sausage, and, most notably, meatballs. Because they also offer wholesale and foodservice products, their meatballs may also have made it into restaurants. They have not yet posted any kind of information about the meat recall to their website, nor any of their social media sites, despite at least one request on Facebook.
Unlike other bacteria, which prefer a warmer environment, listeria actually grows better in cooler temperatures, making it a particularly dangerous food-borne contaminent. Listeria infection usually begins with typical flu or food poisoning symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, fever, and chills, but may progress to your nervous system, which can cause stiff neck, convulsions, confusion, and loss of balance, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Complete information about which products and lots are impacted by the recall (and there are many), check the USDA’s statement, which includes dates and product numbers. And of course, if you’re in doubt, throw it out.
Image via Buona Vita’s Facebook page