CHICAGO (CBS/AP) — With Thanksgiving less than a week away, thousands of pounds of raw turkey are being recalled, due to a salmonella outbreak.
Jennie-O Turkey has recalled more than 91,000 pounds of ground turkey, the first recall of food products — other than pet food — tied to an ongoing salmonella outbreak that has caused 164 illnesses and one death in 35 states. It’s unclear if any of those cases were linked to Jennie-O turkey.
The products facing recall include 1-pound packages of Jennie-O 93% lean raw ground turkey, taco seasoned turkey, 85 percent lean ground turkey, and Italian-seasoned ground turkey. All products affected have use-by dates of Oct. 1 or Oct. 2, so should not be in stores, but some people might still have them in their refrigerator or freezer.
Jennie-O’s parent company, Austin, Minnesota-based Hormel Foods Corp., said in a statement that government agencies have found the strain in the outbreak in 29 manufacturing plants from 19 companies.
U.S. Department of Agriculture officials have not named those plants or companies. The agency says it has to be able to tie a specific product to illnesses before it can prompt a recall. It notes salmonella is not considered an adulterant in raw poultry unless products can be clearly linked to illnesses.
With Thanksgiving approaching, the agency is reminding people that they should always properly handle and cook their turkeys to kill any possible salmonella. Salmonella in food is estimated to be responsible for 1 million illnesses a year, with symptoms including vomiting, diarrhea and stomach cramps.
Pet food with raw turkey was linked to the outbreak previously. A Minnesota company earlier this year recalled pet food with the same strain of salmonella.