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How does food recalls happen?

Senior News


Food Recalls

How does a food product get put on the shelves or in the freezers of our grocery stores without benefit of inspection? Especially when they’re imported from another country? Inquiring minds would like to know how that happens.

We’re not likely to get answers anytime soon. But we can, at least, get quick alerts when those items are recalled.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service is a good site to watch, or better yet, sign up for alerts. At this writing, there is a product (empanadas) under recall that the USDA is concerned might not be fit for human consumption. At the same time, there are two different dog foods that might be contaminated with salmonella, which can affect not only the dogs but the humans feeding the dogs. Then there are the meatballs with Listeria, the pork products that weren’t inspected, the burritos with Listeria, the soup with undeclared allergens and much more. For more information on these recalls or to sign up for email notices, go to www.fsis.usda.gov/recalls.

Food Manufacturing is another good site to watch for up-to-the-minute recall and alert information (www.foodmanufacturing.com/ recalls-alerts).

Recalls.gov is yet another site for recall notices, and not just food. The site also lists motor vehicles, boats, medicine, cosmetics and environmental products. To sign up for any or all of the alert categories, click “Sign Up for E-Mail” on the left side of the screen and choose those of interest. Of all the recall sites, this one is most comprehensive because of the variety of categories of products. For example, if you wonder if your vehicle has ever had a recall, you can enter its VIN. Or go directly to www.nhtsa.gov.

Signing up for email alerts might be a good idea. If you find that you are getting duplicate information, you can always cancel one. But it’s better to be informed and safe.

(c) 2023 King Features Synd., Inc.

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