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Gross Chicken News: Tyson Issues Salmonella Recall, Roach-Infested Foster Farms Reopens

Photo by via the DVSRoss on Flickr
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Bad news birds for cluck lovers. Tyson Foods has issued a voluntary recall for an estimated 33,840 pounds of uncooked mechanically separated chicken that might have been tainted with salmonella. The product was sold for institutional use, meaning it was going to prisons and the like, and was not sold to stores or the public, but it does bring to light the increasing instability of our food system.

To add to the disturbing factor, the 846 cases of the recalled chicken were produced on Oct. 11, 2013, meaning they've either been sitting around for quite some time, or they've already been consumed. Cases were shipped to institutional customers in California, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio and Wisconsin.

In their statement, Tyson says there have been seven confirmed illnesses that occurred in early December are potentially linked to the product. And according to the USDA, some people who consumed entrees prepared with the product at a correctional facility became ill.

In October, Foster Farms had a similar scarewith chicken that was linked to their Livingston facilities, which harbored less-than-desirable conditions, including cockroach and insect infestations. It's important to note that they weren't in fact shut down for their salmonella outbreaks on record.

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According to Oregon Live, the conditions were pretty dire:

"Cockroaches were observed at a sink across from a processing line, with "exposed product" on the slaughterhouse floor, the notice said. On Tuesday, live cockroaches were on a plastic tub that came into contact with chicken. Inspectors also cited the plant for noncompliance on Dec. 28, Nov. 4 and Sept. 14 after roaches were observed during production."

The plant was ordered to stop operations, but was just opened back up on Monday. In July 2013, a total of 134 persons infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Heidelberg were reported from 13 states due to Foster Farms chicken. Then in December, 416 people were infected with seven outbreak strains of Salmonella Heidelberg have been reported from 23 states and Puerto Rico, according to Food Safety News.

If that doesn't make you reconsider those hot wings with your Super Bowl spread, we don't know what will.