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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

24 with E. coli O121 in 15 States, including Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia Linked to Frozen Chicken Quesadilla

One of the “Big Six” E. coli strains (O26, O45, O103, O111, O121 and O145) prompts recall.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) was notified of a multistate investigation of E. coli O121 illnesses on March 19, 2013. Food samples were collected from an ill individual in New York as part of this investigation, and tested by the New York State Department of Health Wadsworth Laboratory. At present, the cluster includes 24 cases in 15 states. A sample of a Farm Rich frozen chicken mini quesadilla product from a New York case tested positive for the outbreak strain of E. coli O121. Eight cases in Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia report consuming Farm Rich products. FSIS is continuing to work with federal and state public health partners on this investigation, including the New York State Department of Health, New York State Department of Agriculture & Markets, Food and Drug Administration, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Rich Products Corporation, a Buffalo, NY firm, is recalling approximately 196,222 pounds of frozen chicken quesadilla and various other heat treated, not fully cooked frozen mini meals and snack items because they may be contaminated with E. coli O121, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.   The following products are subject to FSIS and FDA recall:

  • 7.2-oz. cartons of Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in pizza dough, UPC code 041322376909 with a best by date of May 15 or May 16, 2014.
  • 22-oz. cartons of Farm Rich mini pizza slices with cheese pepperoni and sauce in pizza dough, UPC code 041322356437 with a best by date of May 15 or May 16, 2014.
  • 18-oz. bags of Farm Rich mini quesadillas with cheese, grilled white meat chicken in a crispy crust, UPC code 041322356352 with a best by date of May 14, 2014.
  • 21-oz. bags of Farm Rich philly cheese steaks with cheese, beef & onions in a crispy crust, UPC code 041322356345 with a best by date of May 13, 2014.
  • 22-oz. cartons of Farm Rich mozzarella bites in a pizzeria style crust, UPC code 041322374431 with a best by date of May 19, 2014.
  • 7-oz. cartons of Farm Rich mozzarella bites in a pizzeria style crust, UPC code 041322376916 with a best by date of May 19, 2014.
  • 22-oz. bags of Market Day Mozzarella Bites, UPC code 041322804358 with a best by date of May 12, 2014.

Here are a few earlier E. coli O121 outbreaks:

Dungeness Valley Creamery Raw Whole Milk 2009

Jefferson County Jail Pasteurized American Cheese or Margarine 2007

Utah Wendy’s Restaurant Lettuce 2006

Nebraska Day Care 2006

Connecticut Lake Water 1999