Contaminated Eggs Found in Nine States – Buyer Beware
Rose Acre Farms has announced that it will be recalling nearly 207 million eggs after concern arose across multiple states that they could be contaminated with salmonella. This bacterial infection can cause serious illness and death, particularly among those with compromised immune systems, including children and the elderly.
The company is recalling the products after federal officials tied an outbreak to the company’s facility in North Carolina, according to information released by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Twenty-three people across nine states have been treated for symptoms. There have been no fatalities reported.
Eggs produced at the family-owned Rose Acre Farms headquartered in Seymour, Indiana, were distributed to numerous retail stores and restaurants in Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Walmart Inc. is among one of the larger retailers that were selling the recalled eggs. They were also sold to Waffle House restaurants and Food Lion stores.
An investigation by the federal agency led to an inspection of the family-owned and operated farm, which is located in Hyde County, N.C., and produces 2.3 million eggs a day from 3 million hens. Investigators discovered the contaminated eggs were sold under brand names such as Great Value, Country Daybreak, and Crystal Farms, and 54 UPC codes are listed as culprits.
Rose Acres has seventeen facilities in total across eight states. This is the largest egg recall in the U.S. since 2010, when a major salmonella outbreak tied to Iowa egg farms infected more than 1,500 consumers. Roughly 500 million eggs from two Iowa farms owned and controlled by Austin J. DeCoster and his company, Quality Egg, were recalled that year. DeCoster and his son, Peter DeCoster, each pleaded guilty to one count of introducing adulterated food into interstate commerce after authorities discovered they sold eggs contaminated with Salmonella enteriditis to several states and bribed an inspector for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in an attempt to sell eggs that were “red tagged” for failing to meet minimum industry standards.
The men were each sentenced to three months in jail and fined $7 million. Luckily, this time around, far fewer people were infected due to the uncommon version of the infection affecting purchasers of the contaminated eggs – Salmonella Braenderup. Investigators were able to isolate and pinpoint the cause of the issue much sooner.
The FDA has been more stringently focused on controlling salmonella amid the opioid epidemic. In recent months, the agency recalled kratom-based products manufactured by the Las Vegas area Triangle Pharmanaturals after investigators found many contained salmonella, which spread to nearly 40 states and affected 132 people. This unregulated herbal supplement is used to treat pain, anxiety, depression, and symptoms of opioid withdrawal.
A few other food items have been recently recalled, including bags of raw coconut from International Harvest Inc. packaged as Organic Go Smile! Raw Coconut. Triple T Specialty Meats, based in Ackley, Iowa, was also forced to recall more than 20,000 pounds of ready-to-eat chicken salad products. It remains unclear whether charges will be pursued against Rose Acre Farms for distributing its contaminated eggs.