OTTAWA, July 21, 2018 /CNW/ - Original Notice
Why you should take note?
The Public Health Agency of Canada is collaborating with provincial public health partners, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada to investigate outbreaks of Salmonella Enteritidis infections in three provinces linked to frozen raw breaded chicken products.
As part of these outbreak investigations, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued food recall warnings on July 20, 2018 and July 21, 2018 for the following products:
- No Name brand Chicken Nuggets (907g), with a best before date of May 15, 2019 on the outer package and a lot code of 1358M on the inner package. UPC - 0 60383 89685 0. The product was distributed nationally.
- Unbranded $10 Chicken Fries (1.81kg), with a best before date of March 23, 2019. UPC - 0 60249 01411 4. The product was distributed nationally.
Canadians are advised not to consume the recalled products, and retailers and restaurants are advised to not serve the recalled products.
Frozen breaded chicken products containing raw poultry pose an increased health risk to individuals who handle, prepare or consume these types of foods. The Public Health Agency of Canada advises Canadians to follow proper food safety practices when handling, preparing or consuming frozen raw breaded chicken products such as chicken burgers, nuggets, strips, and chicken fries.
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. 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.
Currently, there are 7 cases of Salmonella Enteritidis illness in three jurisdictions: British Columbia (3), Alberta (1), and Ontario (3). One person has been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. Individuals became sick in June 2018. The average age of cases is 12 years, with ages ranging from 1 to 42 years. The majority of cases (57%) are male.
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. Food samples of these products, No Name brand Chicken Nuggets, with a best before date of May 15, 2019 on the outer package and a lot code of 1358M on the inner package and unbranded $10 Chicken Fries, with a best before date of March 23, 2019, tested positive for Salmonella Enteritidis. The positive food samples had genetic fingerprints (using whole genome sequencing) that matched the genetic fingerprints of the cases of human illness reported in these outbreaks. As part of the food safety investigation, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued food recall warnings for the contaminated products. The CFIA is working with industry to ensure that these products are removed from the retail market. The investigation is ongoing, and it is possible that more products linked to the outbreak investigations will be identified. The public health notice will be updated as the investigations evolve.
Who is most at risk?
Anyone can become sick with a Salmonella infection, but infants, children, seniors and those with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of serious illness because their immune systems are more fragile.
Most people who become ill from a Salmonella infection will recover fully after a few days. It is possible for some people to be infected with the bacteria and not get sick or show any symptoms, but to still be able to spread the infection to others.
What you should do to protect your health?
Check to see whether you have the recalled frozen raw breaded chicken products in your home or place of business. If you do:
- Do not use or eat the recalled products. Secure the recalled products in a plastic bag and then either throw them out or return them to the store where they were purchased.
- If you do not have the original packaging of a frozen raw breaded chicken product and you are unsure of whether it is included in the food recall warnings, throw it out just to be safe.
Wash your hands with soap and warm water immediately following any contact with a recalled product.
Beyond recalled food items, frozen raw breaded chicken products may appear to be pre-cooked or browned, but they may contain raw chicken and should be handled and prepared no differently than other raw poultry products.
If you are preparing breaded chicken products, such as nuggets, strips, burgers or fries, the following precautions should be taken to protect your health:
- Do not eat raw or undercooked frozen breaded chicken products. Cook all frozen breaded chicken products to an internal temperature of at least 74°C (165°F) to ensure that they are safe to eat. Use a digital food thermometer to verify the temperature. Insert the digital food thermometer through the side of the product, all the way to the middle. Oven-safe meat thermometers that are designed for testing whole poultry and roasts during cooking are not suitable for testing nuggets, strips or burgers.
- Microwave cooking of frozen raw breaded poultry products, including chicken nuggets, strips, burgers or fries, is not recommended because of the possibility of uneven heating.
- Always follow the cooking instructions on the package, including for products labelled Uncooked, Cook and Serve, Ready to Cook, and Oven Ready.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water before and after handling frozen raw breaded chicken products.
- Use a separate plate, cutting board and utensils when handling frozen raw breaded chicken products to prevent the spread of harmful bacteria.
- Do not re-use plates, cutting boards or utensils that have come in contact with frozen raw breaded chicken products to serve the cooked product unless they have been thoroughly washed.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms of a Salmonella infection, called salmonellosis, typically start 6 to 72 hours after exposure to Salmonella bacteria from an infected animal or contaminated product.
- abdominal cramps
These symptoms usually last for four to seven days. In healthy people, salmonellosis often clears up without treatment. In some cases, severe illness and hospitalization may occur. People who are infected with Salmonella bacteria can be infectious from several days to several weeks. People who experience symptoms, or who have underlying medical conditions, should contact their health care provider if they suspect they have a Salmonella infection.
What is the Government of Canada doing?
The Government of Canada is committed to food safety. The Public Health Agency of Canada leads the human health investigation into an outbreak and is in regular contact with its federal, provincial and territorial partners to monitor the situation and to collaborate on steps to address an outbreak.
Health Canada provides food-related health risk assessments to determine whether the presence of a certain substance or microorganism poses a health risk to consumers.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency conducts food safety investigations into the possible food source of an outbreak.
The Government of Canada will continue to update Canadians as new information related to these investigations becomes available.
- CFIA's Related Food Recall Warning – July 20, 2018
- CFIA's Related Food Recall Warning – July 21, 2018
- Working with Industry on Frozen Raw Breaded Chicken Products
- Frozen Raw Breaded Chicken Fact Sheet
- Salmonella Fact Sheet
- Poultry Safety Fact Sheet
- General Food Safety Tips
- Recalls and safety alerts mobile application
SOURCE Health Canada
For further information: Media Contact, Public Health Agency of Canada, Media Relations, (613) 957-2983; Public Inquiries, Call toll-free: 1-866-225-0709, Email: [email protected]