Foreign-matter contamination prompts Pilgrim's Pride recall

WACO, Texas (AP) — Pilgrim's Pride ordered a massive recall of cooked chicken products Tuesday after consumers and federal meat inspectors found contamination by such foreign material as wood, plastic, rubber and metal.

The recall of almost 4.6 million pounds of fully cooked chicken products announced Tuesday is an expansion of an earlier recall, according to a statement issued Tuesday by the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That one, announced April 7, covered almost 41,000 pounds of cooked chicken nugget products.

Tuesday's recall involves products produced between Aug. 21, 2014, and March 1, 2016, bearing the establishment number "EST.20728" inside the USDA inspection mark, the agency said.

The items were shipped nationwide for institutional use, and records from the Waco, Texas-based company show schools purchased the products through Pilgrim's Pride commercial channels.

No confirmed reports of adverse reactions from consumption of the products have been reported, the agency said.

The recall involves 10-, 20- and 30-pound boxes of clear 5-pound bags of various Gold Kist Farms, Sweet Georgia Brand and Pierce fully cooked, whole grain-breaded chicken nuggets, patties and popcorn-style fritters, each with a variety of use-by and sell-by dates, package codes and production dates. Those details are available online .

The federal agency advises that consumers finding affected products either discard them or return them to Pilgrim's Pride.

In a statement, Pilgrim's Pride confirmed the recall was voluntary. It says it is retraining all employees involved in the production and is reviewing its production processes and plant systems to prevent a recurrence.

More details here.

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