Millions of packages of frozen foods, including fruits and vegetables, distributed to all 50 U.S. states, Canada, and Mexico have been recalled due to an outbreak of the life-threatening illness listeria, the Associated Press reports.
One of the largest food recalls in recent history, it involves over 400 products, both organic and conventional, from the processing plant CRF Frozen Foods in Pasco, Washington, which are sold under more than 40 different brand names like Earth’s Pride, Wild Oats, Panda Express, Signature Kitchens, and True Value. These products were packaged for sale as individual items and were also repackaged by companies like Piggly Wiggly, Kroger, and ConAgra as ingredients in packages sold at stores such as Trader Joe's and Costco, thus "trickling down" into other items.
While the initial recall, started on April 23 according to the Times, covered 11 frozen vegetable products, CRF expanded it to include all of its frozen produce manufactured or processed at the plant since May 2, 2014.
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All of the affected products have a "best by" or "sell by" date between April 26, 2016 and April 26, 2018, but a spokeswoman for the CDC told the Times that federal officials are concerned that shoppers will not examine these dates as closely as they might for fresh products because frozen goods have a long shelf-life.