SpaghettiOs, Frozen Dinners Pulled from Shelves

WASHINGTON (AP) - Two popular grocery items are being pulled off
the shelves - SpaghettiOs that weren't adequately heated during
processing, and Marie Callender frozen dinners that pose a
salmonella risk.
The Department of Agriculture announced both recalls late
Thursday. ConAgra Foods is recalling all Marie Callender's brand
cheesy chicken and rice frozen meals after they were possibly
linked to a salmonella outbreak in 14 states.
And Campbell Soup Co. is recalling 15 million pounds of
SpaghettiOs with meatballs after a cooker malfunctioned at one of
the company's plants in Texas.
ConAgra said it was recalling the Marie Callender's meals after
it was informed by the federal Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention of a possible link between the meals and 29 illnesses.
Eight of those sickened reported eating the product in April or
May.
The company is recalling all of the meals, which are labeled
"Marie Callender's Cheesy Chicken and Rice White Meat Chicken and
Broccoli over Rice Topped with Rich Cheddar Sauce," regardless of
production date. It was distributed to retail outlets nationwide.
The most common symptoms of salmonella are diarrhea, abdominal
cramps and fever within eight hours to 72 hours of eating a
contaminated product. It can be life-threatening, especially to
those with weakened immune systems.
ConAgra was linked to two other high-profile recalls in 2007.
That year the company's Banquet pot pies were linked to 401 cases
of salmonella in 41 states and its Peter Pan brand peanut butter
was linked to at least 625 salmonella cases in 47 states.
There have been no illnesses related to consumption of the
SpaghettiOs, but Campbell spokesman Anthony Sanzio said the company
is recalling certain lots of the product manufactured since
December 2008 "out of an abundance of caution" because officials
don't know exactly when a cooker at the Paris, Texas, plant
malfunctioned.
Because the cans were not sufficiently heated, Sanzio said, they
could be ripe for bacterial growth and the product could spoil
before its use-by date.
Sanzio said the company believes the cooker malfunctioned
recently but that officials are not certain. He said there are
likely about 35,000 cases of SpaghettiOs subject to the recall on
the market right now, but USDA announced the recall of 15 million
pounds because that is all of the product that has been
manufactured since December 2008. Much of it has likely been
consumed.
Recalled are certain lots of three varieties of the pasta
product often consumed by children: SpaghettiOs with Meatballs,
SpaghettiOs A to Z with Meatballs, and SpaghettiOs Fun Shapes with
Meatballs (Cars).
The recalled products have "EST 4K," as well as a use-by date
between June 2010 and December 2011 printed on the bottom of the
can. The products were manufactured between December 2008 and June
2010 and distributed to retail establishments nationwide.
Sanzio said the company has received no customer complaints to
date.


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