Thursday, May 25, 2017

Breakfast Sausage Recalled Due to the Potential for Metal Foreign Material

A Kansas establishment is recalling 90,000 lbs of RTE breakfast sausage for metal pieces after "another FSIS-regulated establishment that pieces of metal were embedded in a fully cooked sausage product".

Over the past year, there has been an increasing amount of recalls due to foreign objects.  While these foreign objects may not result in any major injuries, the cost of conducting a recall warrants companies putting in more effort in foreign object control.  This goes beyond just having a metal detector installed into the process.

First, many metal detectors do not get the attention they need.  A really nice guide for metal detectors is "The Guide to Reducing Metal Contamination in the Food Processing Industry" published by Safeline.  

X-ray equipment is much more affordable than it once was, and it can pick-up items metal detectors can't, such as glass, hard plastic, stones, etc.  They are even suitable for metal and foil containers.

But detection is just one part of a foreign object control program.  Other important elements include raw material inspection, preventive maintenance, employee training to prevent accidental drops, and controls at ingredient addition steps to prevent foreign material from packaging and inline preventive devices such as magnets and sifters.

All of these systems need to be properly maintained and verified for performance.  Additionally, consumer complaints must be reviewed with an investigation and appropriate corrective action for any foreign material issues.

USDA / FSIS Recall Notice
Armour Eckrich Meats, LLC Recalls Ready-To-Eat Sausage Products Due to Possible Foreign Matter Contamination
Class II Recall 054-2017
Health Risk: Low 
May 24, 2017 Congressional and Public Affairs Autumn Canaday  (202) 720-9113

WASHINGTON, May 24, 2017– Armour Eckrich Meats, LLC, a Junction City, Kan. establishment, is recalling approximately 90,978 pounds of ready-to-eat sausage products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically pieces of metal, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The food service fully-cooked pork, turkey and beef breakfast sausage items were produced and packaged from April 26 through April 28, 2017. The following products are subject to recall: [View Labels (PDF Only)]
  • 8,769 cases of 16.6 oz. vacuumed packages containing “ECKRICH SMOK-Y CHEDDAR BREAKFAST SAUSAGE, NATURALLY HARDWOOD SMOKED” on the label, case code/ UPC number “27815 17984,” and a Use By date of “08/17/17.”

The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. 3JC” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to distribution centers in Arkansas, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.

The problem was discovered on May 15, 2017 when Armour Eckrich Meats, Inc. was notified by another FSIS-regulated establishment that pieces of metal were embedded in a fully cooked sausage product produced by Armour Eckrich Meats, Inc.

There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.

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 with questions about the recall can call 1 (877) 933-4625. Media with questions about the recall can contact Kassi Belz, vice president of public relations for the Dalton Agency, at (904) 398-5222.

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