A new recall has just hit grocery store shelves due to an undeclared allergen. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) on Tuesday, March issued a public health alert after PS Seasoning of Iron Ridge, Wisconsin issued a recall for various ready-to-eat (RTE) meat products. The products contain an FDA-regulated seasoning mix that may contain undeclared wheat.
The recalled products are from various establishments and some were distributed nationwide. The meat products impacted by the recall bear establishment number "EST. 44972", "EST. 46312", "EST. 44869", or EST. 47423 inside the USDA mark of inspection. According to the FSIS, the retail products from "EST. M-47484" do not bear a USDA mark of inspection. The FSIS noted that "this situation is currently evolving, which means additional products may be added" and encouraged consumers to "please continue to check back for any possible updates." The full list of products subject to the public health alert can be found here.
According to the alert, the recall was issued after the FSIS inspected establishments received notification from their seasoning supplier that the seasoning mix may contain undeclared wheat. The FSIS was then notified of the issue. The FSIS said it and FDA are coordinating on the issue.
While there have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions in relation to the recalled products, the undeclared allergen could lead to a life-threatening reaction for those with a wheat allergy. Allergic reactions can be caused by eating wheat, and in some cases, by inhaling wheat flour. Mayo Clinic notes that signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction to wheat typically develop within minutes to hours after eating something containing wheat. Symptoms include swelling, itching or irritation of the mouth or throat, hives, nasal congestion, headache, difficulty breathing, and cramps, nausea or vomiting. For some people, wheat allergy may cause anaphylaxis, which can cause swelling or tightness of the throat, chest pain or tightness, severe difficulty breathing, trouble swallowing, pale, blue skin color, and dizziness or fainting. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening.
The FSIS has urged consumers who purchased the recalled products to not consume them. Consumers should either throw the affected products away or return them to the place of purchase. The FSIS also encouraged those concerned about an illness to contact a health care provider.