These Tyson Chicken Products Have Been Linked to a Deadly Listeria Outbreak
Meat companies had a rough year in 2020, with a surge in demand that couldn't be met when facilities faced deadly COVID-19 outbreaks. Things are now closer to normal, even as the price of some types of meat remains high.
But one of the largest brands is facing a new setback—almost 8.5 million pounds of its most popular chicken products are the subject of a new recall because they could be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Here's all the info you need to know. (And for more on eating clean right now, here are The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.)
There are 30 chicken products involved in the Tyson recall.
That's right, over two dozen Tyson items are listed in the recall notice, but there are also six other brands, too. They include:
- Jet's Pizza – Fully Cooked, Fajita Seasoned, Boneless, Skinless – Diced Chicken Breasts with Rib Meat
- Fully Cooked Grilled Chicken Breast Strips – Boneless, Skinless with Rib Meat
- Casey's General Store – Fully Cooked, Grilled Chicken Breast Strips with Rib Meat
- Fully Cooked Grilled Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast Strips with Rib Meat
- Marco's Pizza Fully Cooked, Sliced Chicken Breast Strips with Rib Meat, Smoke Flavor Added
- Little Caesars Fully Cooked Chicken Wing Sections
To see the full list, head to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) website.
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Three hospitalizations and one death are now connected to the Tyson chicken recall, the CDC says.
Although the chicken was sent out as early as December, FSIS received word of potential illnesses on June 9. It then linked the cases to pre-cooked chicken from Tyson by taking samples from two establishments while working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The samples are closely related to Listeria, according to the recall notice.
So far, the illnesses have been limited to two in Texas and one in Delaware between April 6 and June 5, but the CDC says there could be more since it takes around three to four weeks to determine if someone who is sick is part of an outbreak.
"The true number of sick people in an outbreak is also likely higher than the number reported," it says in a report. "This is because some people recover without medical care and are not tested for Listeria."
The recalled chicken was sent not only to grocery stores but to other places, as well.
The items were produced between Dec. 26, 2020, and April 13, 2021, and were shipped nationwide to retailers but also hospitals, nursing facilities, restaurants, schools, and Department of Defense locations, FSIS says. It does not specify which places the three illnesses are connected to, but the CDC investigation is ongoing.
FSIS is concerned that the products may still be in consumer and institutional freezers. If you find it in yours, do not eat it. Throw it away or return it to the place of purchase.
Related: Costco's Popular Rotisserie Chickens May Soon Skyrocket in Price for This Reason
A Listeria illness can cause multiple symptoms and is especially dangerous for certain types of people.
With symptoms like a fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, diarrhea, and convulsions, it can sometimes be difficult to connect an illness with Listeria contamination. If you have had any of these symptoms and believe you may have been in contact with the infected Tyson chicken included in the recall, the CDC recommends calling your healthcare provider right away. An illness for certain people can be more harmful than in others.
"In pregnant women, the infection can cause miscarriages, stillbirths, premature delivery or life-threatening infection of the newborn. In addition, serious and sometimes fatal infections in older adults and persons with weakened immune systems," FSIS says. "Persons in the higher-risk categories who experience flu-like symptoms within two months after eating contaminated food should seek medical care and tell the health care provider about eating the contaminated food."
This isn't the only recalled food at your local supermarket right now. For more, read these next: