Keeping up with all the product recalls that can affect you and your family is an involved but necessary chore. Ignoring recalls can put yourself and your whole family's health at immediate risk, especially with recalls involving food and other agricultural products.
Just recently, E. coli and salmonella concerns have prompted the FDA to issue a voluntary recall of over 200 million eggs and 8,757 pounds of prepackaged salad believed to contain contaminated romaine lettuce. You don't want your loved ones anywhere near that stuff!
Thankfully, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a website devoted to informing the public about recall alerts and warnings issued by the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).
The FSIS is the USDA are responsible for the safety and proper labeling of meat, poultry and egg products sold in the U.S. The same agency also ensures and investigates the safety of public restaurants and other food-related outlets.
FSIS Current Recalls and Alerts
Food recalls can be triggered by the following:
- A food manufacturer, importer or distributor discovers a potential food safety issue in its products and voluntarily reports it to the FDA, USDA or FSIS.
- A food product fails sampling tests by the FDA, USDA or FSIS.
- The FDA, USDA or FSIS discovers a health risk upon investigation of a food manufacturer or importer's facility.
- A certain disease or illness is suspected to be linked to a particular food product. In this case, local state health departments contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) who then alerts the FSIS for a recall.
After the FSIS is informed of a potential recall, the agency evaluates the need for a product recall by forming specific investigative teams. A Recall Committee then assesses all gathered information to determine if a recall is required.
If a recall is issued, the FSIS informs the food manufacturer, importer or distributor about the recall then makes sure that all efforts in removing and destroying the affected products are made. The FSIS will then go through its media channels to inform the public about the recall. This includes recall announcements to public health agencies, press releases, and timely posts to the FSIS "Current Recalls and Alerts" website.
To stay updated with the latest food recalls for you and your family's safety, FSIS's "Current Recalls and Alerts" website is a vital resource to bookmark.
Here, you can check all the existing FSIS recalls for meat, poultry, and egg products sold in the U.S. including recall date and the links to their individual pages.
The individual pages contain the following detailed information:
- the food establishment
- manufacturer or importer
- the items and the number of products involved
- the affected areas
- nature of the recall
- reported victims (if any)
- recommendations for the consumer
More importantly, you can also set up email notifications and alerts on this site for even faster recall notifications. Be the first one to know when a product recall is issued.
Just click on the "Receive email notification when recalls or public health alerts are issued" on the page then submit your email address (or sign in with a social media account.)
Keep in mind that all the recalls listed on this website are "active" recalls. Once a recall is completed, it will be removed from the page and will be moved to FSIS's Recall Case Archive instead.
Ready to stay informed about food recalls that can affect you and your family? To be updated on USDA's FSIS recalls and alerts, just click the blue link below.
Alternatively, click here to access the site.