Grocery buyers beware, Listeria is lurking again. From frozen veggies to cookie dough, reports of outbreaks of the nasty bacteria have been all too common these days.
Now New Jersey-based Pinnacle Foods Inc. reports that Listeria was found in one of its production plants. Pinnacle produces a number of Aunt Jemima frozen pancakes, waffles and French toast products.
Packages coming out of the plant are being recalled as a precaution. This move was announced last Friday and will affect distributors and retailers in the U.S., Mexico, and Canada.
While to date there have been no reported cases of illnesses linked to the products, Listeria infection is serious business. Pinnacle is erring on the side of caution, citing the health and safety of their consumers as the top priority.
According to the CDC, infection from Listeria bacteria can cause serious, and sometimes fatal, health issues for children, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems. Listeria is different than common food poisoning, in that infection can take up to four weeks to manifest. With food poisoning, the symptoms occur almost immediately after consuming the contaminated food.
And the symptoms of Listeria infection are significant, and much more harmful than those associated with general food poisoning. Listeria infections can cause headaches, a stiff neck, loss of balance, confusion, and convulsions.
Pinnacle is coordinating the recall with the Food and Drug Administration. So, check your freezer carefully and return all affected products to the store where they were purchased for a full refund.