Poultry processor Pilgrim's Pride is recalling 27 million pounds of luncheon meat because the meat may be contaminated with listeria. The meat was processed between May 1 and Oct. 11.
The meat is sold under a variety of names -- Wampler Foods, Block and Barrel, Bonos, Golden Acre and Reliance and a variety of private labels. The products include turkey and other poultry sold freshly sliced or made into sandwiches at deli counters.
The national recall is the largest meat recall in the history of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The products include turkey and poultry sold freshly sliced or made into sandwiches at deli counters and in individually sold packages of pre-sliced deli meats. Wampler officials said the recall doesn't include fresh turkeys.
Each package being recalled bears the plant number P-13-51 inside the USDA mark of inspection and a production date.
The company halted production at its plant in Franconia, in suburban Philadelphia, after receiving test results of samples taken from floor drains.
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People at risk for listeriosis and their family members or individuals preparing food for them should:
- Reheat until steaming hot the following types of ready-to-eat foods: hot dogs, luncheon meats, cold cuts, fermented and dry sausage, and other deli-style meat and poultry products.
- Thoroughly reheating food can help kill any bacteria that might be present. If you cannot reheat these foods, do not eat them.
- Wash hands with hot, soapy water after handling these types of ready-to-eat foods. (Wash for at least 20 seconds.)
- Also wash cutting boards, dishes, and utensils. Thorough washing helps eliminate any bacteria that might get on your hands or other surfaces from food before it is reheated.
- Do not eat soft cheeses such as feta, Brie, Camembert, blue-veined or Mexican-style cheese. You can eat hard cheeses, processed cheeses, cream cheese, cottage cheese, and yogurt.
- Do not drink raw, unpasteurized milk or eat foods made from it, such as unpasteurized cheese.
- Observe all expiration dates for perishable items that are precooked or ready-to-eat.
Source: http://www.fsis.usda.gov (Food Safety and Inspection Service United States Department of Agriculture) contributed to this report.