Another chicken product recalled

A third recall in as many days has been announced by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency due to possible contamination with salmonella.

The $10 Chicken Fries, a frozen breaded product distributed nationally by Loblaws, join another chicken recall of No Name brand Chicken Nuggets announced last week along with an apparently unrelated recall of Ritz Bits.

The chicken fries are in the 1.81-kilogram package with best-before dates of March 23, 2019.

Seven cases of salmonella enteritidis illness have been reported in Canada in connection with eating the breaded chicken products. Three are in British Columbia, three in Ontario and one in Alberta. Those affected became ill in June.

The Public Health Agency of Canada said in a news release that one of these people has been hospitalized but no deaths have been reported in connection with the matter.

“Based on the findings from the investigations to date, exposure to frozen, raw, breaded chicken products has been identified as the source of illness. Several of the ill individuals involved in the outbreaks reported eating No Name brand Chicken Nuggets (907g) or unbranded $10 Chicken Fries (1.81kg) before their illness occurred,” the health agency said.

Ages of those affected range from 12 to 42.

“These outbreaks are a reminder that salmonella can be present in various frozen, raw, breaded chicken products. Illnesses can be avoided by following cooking instructions carefully and verifying the internal temperature after cooking, as recommended, before consuming these products,” the agency said.

“Frozen, raw, breaded chicken products must be cooked to an internal temperature of at least 74°C (165°F) to ensure that they are safe to eat.”

Anyone who has bought the recalled products should discard them or return them to place of purchase.

The health agency said it identified the contaminated food sample through whole genome sequencing. An investigation continues, with the possibility that more food will be added to the recall.

Most people who get ill from salmonella will fully recover after a few days but infants, seniors and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk of serious illness. People can spread the infection to others even if they don’t show symptoms themselves.

Symptoms of salmonella ingestion include nausea, fever, chills, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and headache.

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