Frozen hash brown potato products recalled after a state regulatory agency finds Listeria monocytogenes in a product sample during routine testing.
Since the beginning of 2010, several supermarket chains have recalled frozen hash brown potato products, in most cases due to potential contamination with Listeria monocytogenes.
Neither FDA nor any state agencies have posted recall notices or consumer advisories.
The recalls cover at least six varieties of frozen hash brown potatoes, distributed in as many as 17 states.
ShopRite – with stores in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland – advised its customers of the recall on January 4th. According to the Company's website, ShopRite Southern Style Hash Browns –32 oz. (UPC: 41190-40059) was being removed from sale because "... routine testing by a regulatory agency ..." revealed potential contamination with Listeria monocytogenes. ShopRite directed customers to return the product to the store for a refund.
Food City - with stores in Kentucky, Virginia and Tennessee – notified customers on January 5th of the recall of Food Club Shredded Hash Browns (30 oz Pouch).
Giant Eagle – with stores in Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia – recalled on January 8th five varieties of Giant Eagle brand hash brown potato products, in addition to Food Club Shredded Hash Browns, due to "possible bacterial contamination." In response to my email query, Giant Eagle promptly provided the following additional information.
"Our supplier of Giant Eagle and Food Club Frozen Loose Hash Browns has made us aware of the presence of a bacterium in product produced in the same facility as these items. While it has not yet been confirmed that either of these items are affected, Giant Eagle is performing a market recall as a precautionary measure. There are no reported cases of customer illness due to consumption of these items, and no other Giant Eagle potato product is affected, including Giant Eagle Frozen Hash Brown Patties.
"We are testing a sampling of Giant Eagle and Food Club Frozen Loose Hash Browns. It is important to note that any potential health risk is negated if the product is cooked as directed. However, should any customer want to return the previously purchased product, he or she can return the product to their local Giant Eagle and receive the double your money back guarantee upheld for all Giant Eagle brand products."
Brookshire's Food & Pharmacy – with stores in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas – recalled on January 11th Food Club 30 oz. Shredded Hash Browns (UPC-3680006530) and 28 oz. O’Brien Potatoes (UPC-3680006299) because an "... unrelated (non Food Club brand) sample tested positive for the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes from the same manufacturer."
King Soopers (part of The Kroger Co.) – with stores in Colorado and Wyoming – recalled on January 11th Mr. Dell's brand Shredded Hash Browns, 64 oz., because the product "... may contain Listeria monocytogenes..."
Based on the supermarket recall notices and their areas of operation, the recalled frozen hash brown potato products may have been distributed in: Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming.
According to Mike Dizon – Director of Corporate Communications for Topco Associates – Food Club and Giant Eagle brands of Shredded Hash Brown potato products were recalled as a precautionary measure after a state regulatory agency detected Listeria in a single sample during routine testing. Dizon confirmed that Mr. Dell Foods, Inc. is the manufacturer of both the Food City and the Giant Eagle Shredded Hash Brown potatoes, but could not comment on the Mr. Dell's, O'Briens, and ShopRite recalls, as these are not part of Topco's portfolio of products.
Topco Associates is a member-owned company that provides procurement, quality assurance, packaging and other services for its members, which include supermarket retailers, wholesalers and foodservice companies.
Mr. Dell Foods Inc. is based in Kearney, Missouri and has been producing frozen hash brown potato products since 1975. The company's retail products include Mr. Dell's Shredded Hash Browns, Mr. Dell's O'Brien Hash Browns and Mr. Dell's Southern Style Hash Browns. The company also produces the Chef's Choice line of hash brown potatoes for food service operators.
Anyone who has purchased the recalled brands of frozen hash brown potatoes, should return them to the store for a refund.
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