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What do you need to know about food recalls?

The recent recalls of romaine lettuce had people across the country on edge for weeks, due to reports of E. coli contamination, including some consumers getting seriously ill and at least one death. You might breathe a sigh of relief now that you can find your favorite salad on grocery store shelves again, but like many Mississippi residents, you might also have concerns about possible recalls of your favorite foods in the future.

As you know, contaminated food can make you sick and can even be life-threatening. Food distributors, manufacturers, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the Department of Agriculture can issue recalls on food products for numerous reasons. The following information, according to FindLaw, illustrates the problems you could encounter that might prompt a recall:

  • Contamination of the food, including bacteria, glass pieces, vermin droppings or cleaning agents
  • Labels that are missing a warning for a known allergen
  • Mislabeled products – for example, a can labeled “corn” when it contains beans
  • Damaged or improperly stored batches with an increased risk of spoiled or contaminated food

As you can see, not all issues meriting a recall would be dangerous to your health, but they could pose a health risk for someone with severe allergies or a convenience problem for someone with a child who has sensory or taste issues and will not eat certain foods. Other issues, such as E. coli or glass contamination, can result in your hospitalization or worse.

Hopefully, you will never eat a contaminated food product and become ill or injured. If you have concerns about contaminated food, it can help to search online for current food recalls. The manufacturer or distributor of contaminated or improperly handled food may be held liable for your expenses if you had to seek medical attention after eating the products.

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