Turkey Day is almost upon us, and everyone is stocking up on food for the yearly feast. For a great Thanksgiving, all it takes is some time in the kitchen, loved ones to share the day and a big enough appetite for the food on the way. Click or tap to see Kim’s favorite kitchen gadgets.
In spite of all the excitement, federal health officials have published warnings to Americans about several contaminated foods making their ways to store shelves. If someone eats one these items on Thanksgiving Day, they might be spending their holiday weekend in the bathroom at best, or a hospital bed at worst.
If your fridge is stocked with these items, you might want to chuck them in the trash before you or your loved ones have a holiday you’ll never forget. Here’s what you need to know.
‘Tis the season for contaminated food
According to new reports, and confirmed by the CDC, several popular Thanksgiving items are being recalled due to contamination and inspection issues. Not every item will make it to recall, so these warnings also serve an additional purpose: to steer consumers clear of foods that may harm them or their families.
We’ve put together a list of items you need to avoid, as well as the rationale behind the recalls and warnings. If you have any of these items in your fridge or pantry, you may want to throw them out.
Note: Please do not donate these items to charity. A person in need doesn’t deserve to get sick from these foods, either.
Let us avoid the lettuce
A large batch of romaine lettuce from farms in Salinas, California was found to contain a strain of E. coli bacteria. This contamination was responsible for 40 illnesses across 16 states — and as anyone who’s experienced E. coli can tell you, it’s not fun! In fact, it can be deadly in sick, young or elderly populations.
If you’re buying romaine lettuce for Thanksgiving, make sure to check the label to confirm it was not grown in Salinas. If you can’t find any origin information on your lettuce, you’re better off avoiding it altogether.
What the pork?
An Illinois company is recalling more than half a million pounds of raw pork after oversight analysts found the meat was not properly inspected. Raw pork, though a building block to a delicious meal, is actually rather dangerous if not properly cleaned or inspected.
Tapeworm infections are caused by contaminated pork, along with other health hazards to the digestive system. If the pork you’re considering buying was produced between November 25, 2017 to November 9, 2019, do not buy it under any circumstances.
Chicken fried rice ain’t so nice
A company in Mississippi is recalling 172,692 pounds of frozen chicken fried rice, due to the presence of small plastic pieces that can be hazardous to the digestive tract. These items were produced from July 9 to July 11 2019, and are marked with establishment number “P-34708” inside the USDA inspection logo.
Additionally, consumers in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey and Texas should pay extra attention, as these are the states where the recalled rice was primarily shipped.
Cheese Nips: Inferior to Cheez-Its in every way (and also a health risk this season)
People who like Cheese Nips over Cheez-Its are factually incorrect, but they apparently exist somehow. Nonetheless, a range of 11-oz boxes are being recalled due to the presence of yellow plastic shards from a faulty dough scraper. These shards blend in with the crackers, and can cause internal lacerations if consumed.
Keep an eye out for the “best by” date on the boxes. If the date is marked May 18, 19 or 20, 2020, you should avoid picking it up.
Avoid the cottage cheese, please
Kraft Heinz is recalling 9,500 boxes of Breakstone cottage cheese due to the presence of small, red plastic shards in a select amount of product samples. A total of three items have been included in the recall: Breakstone’s 2% Milkfat Lowfat Large Curd Cottage Cheese, and both the small and large curd 4% Milkfat Cottage Cheese.
The plastic parts can cause lacerations and internal bleeding if ingested. There have been no reports of injuries, but 6 individuals have raised concerns due to finding the plastic pieces in their containers. All of the recalled items are marked with a use-by date of December 10, 2019.
Blackberries aren’t berry good this year
Investigators believe a recent hepatitis A outbreak in Indiana, Nebraska and Wisconsin is linked to blackberries sold by the Fresh Thyme grocery chain. Several of the victims recall consuming the fresh blackberries prior to falling ill, and it is likely the incidents are connected by this factor.
Hepatitis A can be extremely dangerous to contract. If you want to buy blackberries, make sure you’re shopping at a different grocery chain, though we recommend avoiding the fruit altogether.
Nobody wants to get sick on a holiday weekend. When you consider the fact that Black Friday comes the day after Thanksgiving, it’s even more critical you remain in good health, so you can get your shopping done. Click or tap here to see our Black Friday Shopping guide for the biggest brick-and-mortar stores around.