Monday, August 6, 2012

RTE Meals Recalled Due to Potential Presence of Listeria monocytogenes

Reichel Foods of Rochester, Minn is recalling 15880 pounds of ready-to-eat meals, called Armour Active Packs, due to the potential presence of Listeria monocytogenes.  The contamination issue was discovered through 3rd party testing.  There have been no reported illnesses.  Product was shipped to 4 states (PA, TX, IN, and MN.)

The product is a multi-unit product targeted for children.  Within the pack, there is a meat and cheese wrap long with an apple and apple dip.  Since children are considered a high risk group, it is especially concerning.

Listeria monocytogenes contamination would most likely come from the plant environment.  In a product like this, we may see the opportunity for contamination coming from the slicing of meat (or shredding of cheese), layering of meat and cheese onto the bread, and/or the packing of the wrap into the case.
Plants packing product like this would be expected to have a stout Listeria control plan in place, which would include sanitation, hygienic control during processing, and an environmental monitoring program.

USDA New Release

Minnesota Firm Recalls Ready-To-Eat Meat and Poultry Products Due To Potential Listeria Monocytogenes Contamination
  Recall Release CLASS I RECALL
Congressional and Public Affairs
Bill Bagley
(202) 720-0286

WASHINGTON, August 5, 2012 – Reichel Foods, a Rochester, Minn. establishment, is recalling approximately 15,880 pounds of ready-to-eat meat and poultry products due to possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The products subject to recall include: [View
Labels (PDF Only)]

5.6 oz. packages of "Armour Active Packs Turkey & Cheese Wrap" Package Code 1026090112 or Case Code 27815-17994
5.6 oz. packages of "Armour Active Packs Ham & Cheese Wrap" Package Code 1026090112 or Case Code 27815-17995

All the products were produced between July 23, 2012, and July 26, 2012, and have a "sell by" date of Sept. 1, 2012. The packages bear the establishment number "P-19941" or "Est. 19941" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The products were shipped to distribution centers in Indiana, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Texas. When available, the retail distribution list will be posted on FSIS' website at

The problem was discovered by the establishment, through microbiological testing by a third party. FSIS and the company have not received reports of illnesses due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Consumers and media with questions about the recall should contact Karin Grzanek of Reichel Foods at (866) 372-2609.

Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at or via smartphone at "Ask Karen" live chat services are available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.

 Recommendations for people at risk for Listeriosis

Wash hands before and after handling raw meat with warm/hot (preferred) or cold soapy running water by rubbing hands together vigorously for at least 20 seconds. Also wash cutting boards, dishes and utensils with hot (preferred), soapy water and clean up any spills right away. The mechanical action of vigorous rubbing of hands and utensils/surfaces creates friction that helps to dislodge bacteria and viruses from hands and surfaces.

Additionally, warm/hot water helps to dissolve fats/foods, aiding in cleaning/microbe removal and can also assist in deactivation of pathogens. For more information on hand washing, go to
. If soapy water is not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can reduce the number of germs on hands in some situations. However, sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs, including viruses. Keep raw meat, fish and poultry away from other food that will not be thoroughly cooked. Use separate cutting boards for raw meat, poultry, and their juices and thoroughly cooked foods. Thoroughly cook ground meat such as beef to an internal temperature of 160° F, as measured with a food thermometer, before eating. Refrigerate raw meat and poultry within two hours after purchase (one hour if temperatures exceed 90° F). Refrigerate cooked meat and poultry within two hours after cooking.

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