Most of the Salmonella cases linked to recalled Barber Foods frozen raw breaded stuffed chicken products have been in Minnesota, even though the products were sold nationwide. At least five people in that state have been sickened by the Barber Foods chicken products; another outbreak with a different Salmonella strain has also been reported in Minnesota.
Using the multiplier of 30.3 for Salmonella outbreaks, since these illnesses are so underreported, means that more than 200 people could be sick just in Minnesota. Barber Foods has recalled more than 1.7 million pounds of their products as a result of this outbreak.
One of the problems with this product is that the breading on the chicken can fall off. If the breading is contaminated with Salmonella bacteria, which is likely, surfaces such as countertops, floors, utensils, and work surfaces can easily be contaminated with the pathogenic bacteria. Another problem is that the product looks cooked because the bread crumbs have been pre browned. These are raw products and must be cooked to 165°F as tested by a food thermometer to be safe to eat.
Some of those sickened in this outbreak have told officials they did cook the chicken as the package directs, to 165°F, and did check the temperature with a food thermometer. This is troubling, since either there was so much bacteria in the product that cooking didn’t kill it or the toxins the bacteria may have produced, or cross-contamination of the product with other foods occurred.
Check the Barber Foods Chicken Salmonella Recall List carefully. If you purchased any of these products and have them in your freezer, do not eat them and do not remove them from the package. Throw them away or return to the place of purchase for a refund.
And if you ate these products and have been suffering with the symptoms of a Salmonella infection, including diarrhea that may be bloody, nausea, vomiting, fever, muscle aches, and abdominal cramps, see your doctor. Salmonella is a reportable illness, and it’s important that everyone sickened in this outbreak be counted and treated to help prevent more cases. Secondary cases can occur, since Salmonella can be transmitted person to person.