Friends who invited me to dinner last night served turkey meatballs on linguine. In spite of the day’s news, I didn’t hesitate to eat them because I knew that the turkey came from a family farm nearby. But if I were eating in a restaurant, I would want to know if it came from the company that supplies 14 percent of America’s ground turkey.
For the second time in two months, Cargill is recalling turkey products from a U.S. facility because USDA inspectors found salmonella Heidelberg in meat samples. This time only 185,000 pounds are affected instead of the previous 36 million pounds, but the source is the same: the company’s huge Springdale, Arkansas, plant. At this point no outbreaks are connected to the latest recall. The last one put 22 in hospital, sickened 77 and caused one death.
After USDA inspectors found the antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the ground turkey, the Springdale plant undertook a thorough cleaning and assembled a food safety panel to review its processes. ThePoultrySite.com describes enhancements the company made:
“Since the recall, Cargill has made several enhancements to its food safety programme. These include two additional antibacterial washes, intensifying an existing antibacterial system, disassembling and steam cleaning equipment before resuming ground turkey production, and requiring suppliers of turkey meat to add a new antibacterial wash. The company has also implemented the most aggressive Salmonella monitoring and testing programme in the poultry industry.”
Photo from Drew Avery via Flickr Creative Commons
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