The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Safety Inspection Service recently expanded a Sep. 28 recall for Tip Top Poultry, Inc. products due to a potential Listeria monocytogenes concern.

According to Top Top’s initial press release from Sep. 28, “Today, after extensive testing and in conjunction with the USDA, and out of an abundance of caution for consumers’ health and wellness, we are doing a voluntary recall of all cooked, hot deboned fowl meat produced during the time frame from Jan. 22, 2019 to Sep. 24, 2019.” The most recent update to recall includes an expanded list of products and retailers.

Recalled Product Description: Tip Top Poultry

The recall includes frozen cooked, diced or shredded ready-to-eat chicken products produced between Jan. 21 and Sep. 24, 2019. These include poultry products sold at a variety of retailers across the United States, including Trader Joe’s, Food Lion, Piggly Wiggly, Harris Teeter, IGA, BI-LO, Giant Supermarket, ALDI and others. For a full list of retailers that received or sold the recalled chicken, visit the USDA’s website here.

Why the Chicken Was Recalled

According to Tip Top, in a press release, “In early summer, we received word from the Centers for Disease Control that they were investigating an outbreak of listeriosis. As part of their investigation, the United States of Agriculture and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency were testing consumer products to determine if they could find a source for the illnesses.”

After one out of 10 samples taken from a Manitoba food court tested positive for listeria, Tip Top retained a third-party sanitation firm to make changes in its Rockmart, Georgia ready-to-eat cooking facility. Of the contamination findings, Tip Top noted, “We were shocked, saddened and moved to action when we learned this.”

Following another positive test, on Sep. 25, Tip Top made more changes, “First, we placed all of the products from that cooking line on hold so that no more risk would be introduced into the marketplace. In addition, we conducted a voluntary recall of all items from that production line since Jan. 21 even though only a few days tested positive.” The company also retained an independent operational food safety expert, shut down the affected cooking line and investigated the line for the root cause.

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As of now there are no reports of illnesses due to the recalled chicken products.

How to Tell If Your Chicken Was Recalled

The recalled chicken bears the establishment number “Est. P-17453” inside the USDA mark of inspection and product codes from 10000 to 19999 and 70000 to 79999. Visit the USDA’s website here for a full list of recalled products and retailers.

What Consumers Can Do

If you have the recalled chicken do not eat it. Throw the product away or return it the place of purchase. Consumers with questions can visit the Tip Top website here.

—Erica Loop

Featured photo: Caleb Oquendo via Pexels

 

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