As the price of eggs continues to rise in the U.S., consumers are going to have even more difficulty purchasing the breakfast staple. Shoppers in Australia have been advised against eating Watson Family Produce Pasture Raised Free Range Eggs after Watson Family Produce Pty Ltd. recalled the product due to salmonella contamination.
The recall was issued on Jan. 21, per a notice shared by Food Standards Australia & New Zealand (the region's government agency that's comparable to the U.S. FDA or USDA). Included in the recall are Watson Family Produce Pasture Raised Free Range Eggs packaged in 350-gram and 700-gram sizes. The recall only includes hose products with Best Before dates up to and including 25 Feb 2023. The products were sold at Harris Farms in West End, Clayfield and Surfers Paradise Queensland, independent food retailers including IGA in Queensland, and Woolworths in Queensland.
Watson Family Produce Pty Ltd. issued the recall "due to potential microbial (Salmonella) contamination." Consumption of products contaminated with salmonella can cause salmonellosis, a common foodborne illness. Symptoms of salmonellosis include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever, and typically occur within 12 to 72 hours of consumption. While most people recover within four to seven days and do not require treatment, in rare cases, the infection can spread from the intestines to the bloodstream, requiring the individual to be hospitalized.
Due to the risk salmonella contamination poses, consumers have been advised not to eat the recalled products. The products should instead be returned to the place of purchase for a full refund.
The recall comes amid a particularly difficult time for grocery shoppers needing to check eggs off their list. A combination of inflation, which has impacted practically all items at the grocery store, and the deadliest bird flu outbreak in U.S. history has resulted in the price of eggs to soar. According to the recent Consumer Price Index released last week, per Axios, the price of eggs was up 60% in December over a year earlier. This has resulted in the cost of a carton of eggs to soar to $4.25. The high prices have resulted in an increase in egg smuggling from Mexico, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials reported. Farm Action, a nonprofit that campaigns against corporate influence in the farm industry, has also called for an investigation into the rise in prices, alleging that price gouging has been taking place. Experts expect inflated prices to decline in the first half of 2023.