A company that makes prepared chicken salad has recalled more than 180,000 pounds of its products after some were linked to a few cases of E. coli infection.
California-based Glass Onion Catering has recalled products distributed to Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah and Washington, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says.
So far, 26 people in three states have been diagnosed with the same E. coli infection, the USDA says. Fifteen of them say they ate products traced to Glass Onion Catering, which supplies midsized grocery store chains such as Trader Joe’s with "gourmet grab and go” products.
“The company announced that the products are being recalled in conjunction with other foods regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A full list of products being recalled will be available on FDA’s website at: www.fda.gov/Food/RecallsOutbreaksEmergencies/Recalls/default.htm,” USDA said in a statement.
Some of the affected products include:
- 12 oz. packages of “delish pan pacific chop salad”
- 13.4 oz. packages of “atherstone Fine Foods Southwestern Style White Chicken Wrap with Chimichurri Sauce”
- 10.7 oz. packages of “super fresh Foods California Grilled Chicken Salad, Low Fat Mendocino Mustard Dressing
- 10.7 oz. packages of “Lunch Spot Southwestern Style Chicken Wrap, Chile & Lime Dressing
- 10.7 oz. plastic containers of “TRADER JOE’S Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken"
It’s unusual for chicken to be contaminated with E. coli. Usually, the culprit is salmonella with chicken. The latest outbreak involving chicken was traced to Foster farms chicken produced in California. It made 300 people sick.
USDA, which regulates the safety of many foods, says the cluster of E. coli 0157:H7 illnesses started Oct. 29. "Working in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), FDA, the California Department of Public Health, the Washington State Department of Health, and the Arizona Department of Health Services, FSIS has determined that there is a link between the grilled chicken salads and the illness cluster,” USDA says.
Foodborne illness is common, according to CDC. Every year, about 48 million Americans, or one in six people, get sick from eating contaminated food. Common outbreaks include Salmonella in eggs or vegetables, E. coli in beef and Listeria in dairy products.
E. coli is a very common and usually harmless bacteria but the 0157:H7 strain can cause dehydration, bloody diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Most people get better on their own but infection can cause a sometimes-deadly type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS).
First published November 10 2013, 9:30 AM