Saturday, November 2


This time it wasn't on a Friday, but a Saturday (same diff, really) that another recall bombshell was dropped: Another supplier of turkey and chicken deli meat has issued a big recall - 200,000 pounds, or a hundred tons of meat - related to the big listeriosis outbreak in the Northeast. The timing of this is interesting especially in light of a class-action lawsuit expected Monday against Wampler - whose products you may have a hard time finding in the future, as they're using the venerable "duck and cover" strategy of changing their brand names (as though the Pilgrims Pride/Wampler thing wasn't tricky enough) in an attempt to shake off the growing stench of death. No wonder: Local stores report the recall is dragging down their sales of deli meat. Since Congress is once again jumping on the soapbox to ask "Hey, USDA, how come such a deadly fiasco has happened yet again?" the pressure is on to exonerate Wampler and quick, but let's be clear: Whether or not one of the seven (or ten, counting fetuses) dead was killed by Wampler products or not, the exact strain that killed those people was found at Wampler's plant. And what this, along with the new recall, all brings out is that there's so much listeria, i.e. feces, on so much poultry (and other meat as well, of course) that it's near impossible to nail down a single source - consider that the CDC, in this explainer, casually mentions that during the same time as the big outbreak of this particular strain, 81 other people in the area have fallen ill with different strains of listeriosis and 20 of them are now dead. The fact that the CDC considers this other statistic normal and everyday should tell you something about the safety of your average, non-recalled meat.

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