Chicken Caesar Salads Recalled For Salmonella

Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Kits are being recalled over potential Salmonella contamination the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) just announced. The recall has been deemed a Class I, the agency’s most serious and representing a health hazard situation in which there exists a reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.

Real Mex Foods of Vernon, California, is recalling about 77,688 pounds of Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Kits that include dressing made with cilantro that is the subject of a recall announced by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). That recall is being conducted by Fresco Green Farms Inc., over possible cilantro Salmonella contamination.

The products involved in this recall are El Torito Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Kits in 36-ounce and 18-pound trays.

The recalled Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Kits bear the establishment number “P-4140″ inside the USDA mark of inspection. The cases bear any of the following sell by dates: “08/23/12,” “08/30/12,” “09/06/12,” or “09/14/12″ and the trays bear the same sell by dates in the following format: “082312,” “083012,” “090612,” or “091412.” Each case is also marked with identifying item number of “24203.”

The potentially contaminated Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad Kits were produced between July 23, 2012, and August 6, 2012 and distributed to retail establishments in California. When available, the retail distribution list will be posted on FSIS’ web site at

The FSIS was alerted to the problem by Real Mex Foods; Real Mex Foods was informed by a supplier that the cilantro used in the product is the subject of a recall announced by the FDA. Real Mex Foods’ president, Michael Siegmund, may be reached at 1.323.282.2700.

FSIS and the company have received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of this product, to date, in connection with this recall; however it can take between six and 72 hours from consumption of a contaminated product for the symptoms of Salmonella poisoning—salmonellosis—to appear. Symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever. Additional symptoms include chills, headache, nausea, and vomiting that can last up to seven days. The illness usually lasts four to seven days; however, in some, the organism can invade the bloodstream, becoming so severe that hospitalization is required. Sometimes, infection can result in, and produce more severe or chronic illnesses and can leave sufferers with serious life-long health issues.

One of the most common bacterial food borne illnesses, salmonellosis can be especially life threatening to those with weakened immune systems, such as infants; the elderly; and persons with compromised immune systems, such as people with HIV infection or who are undergoing chemotherapy.

As we recently wrote, Fresco Green Farms Inc. of Winchester, California, recalled 1,643 cases of cilantro harvested July 18th-27th 2012. The cilantro was on store shelves in California and Minnesota beginning July 19, 2012 and was likely sold or removed from sale before August 6, 2012. The cilantro is bunched and tied together with a brown rubber band; each bunch is 10 inches in length and 1 ¼ inches in width and individual bunches have no identifying labels or lot numbers. The cilantro was distributed in shipping cases labeled “Fresco Green Farms Inc., Hemet, CA. Produce of USA cilantro 2.5dz.“ The recall followed a routine sampling program by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which revealed that the cilantro has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Fresco Green Farms Inc. can be reached at 1.562.205.7673 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Pacific Standard Time (PST).

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