If You Have This Food In Your Freezer, Throw It Out Now, CDC Says

The agency says the products have been linked to a salmonella outbreak.

It may get a bad rap from some, but using certain frozen ingredients can make whipping up a meal a much easier process. The coldest corner of your kitchen is a reliably safe way to keep your meat, veggies, or fruit edible for longer. But you might want to check what you're reaching for in the freezer the next time you go to prepare yourself some dinner, as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is warning that one specific product could make you seriously sick. Read on to see which food you should throw out right now.

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The CDC is warning that frozen cooked shrimp has been linked to a Salmonella outbreak.

close up of jumbo shrimp scampi

You might want to double-check your ingredients the next time you're making stir fry or gumbo: On June 25, the CDC issued a food safety alert for cooked frozen shrimp distributed by Avanti Frozen Foods. The warning and recall come after Salmonella was found in a sample of the company's nationally distributed shrimp products collected as part of the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Imported Seafood Compliance Program.

The affected shrimp was distributed nationwide under multiple brand names.

Shrimp salad libido food

According to an announcement on the FDA's website, Avanti said that out of "an abundance of caution" it had recalled "certain consignments of various sizes of frozen cooked, peeled, deveined, shrimp (with some packaged with cocktail sauce) sold in various unit sizes." The affected products were sold under the brand names 365, Censea, Chicken of the Sea, CWNO, Hannaford, Honest Catch, Meijer, Open Acres, and Waterfront Bistro.

The agency says that there have been six reported cases of Salmonella infection—including two hospitalizations—reported in Nevada and Arizona but warns that the products were distributed nationwide from late December 2020 to late February 2021. The CDC also cautions that some of the products may have been sold in stores more recently than those dates.

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Anyone who has the recalled shrimp products should throw them away or return them for a refund.

man throwing away black trash back
Shutterstock / Mike_shots

The CDC urges anyone who has purchased frozen shrimp products to check packaging and product codes against the FDA's recall notice. Anyone who purchased the affected items should not eat them and either throw the product out immediately or return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. The agency also warns anyone who may have handled or prepared the products to wash any utensils or surfaces that may have touched the recalled products using hot soapy water or a dishwasher.

Salmonella can cause potentially life-threatening health issues for some people.

young woman with stomach pain

According to the CDC, symptoms of Salmonella can develop in those who have been infected anywhere from six hours to six days after the bacteria has been ingested. The most common signs are diarrhea, fever, nausea, vomiting, and stomach cramps, but some severe illnesses can rarely occur if the organism enters the bloodstream, such as arterial infections, endocarditis, and arthritis.

While most are infected recover without treatment four to seven days after their symptoms first appear, the agency warns that children under the age of five, adults 65 years and up, and people with weakened immune systems are at particularly high risk of a severe illness with Salmonella. The CDC recommends calling your doctor immediately if you notice a fever of 102 degrees Fahrenheit or higher with diarrhea or if stomach issues persist for days without getting better.

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Zachary Mack
Zach is a freelance writer specializing in beer, wine, food, spirits, and travel. He is based in Manhattan. Read more
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