It may be the prime season for beachside clambakes, but you may want to hold off on throwing shrimp into the pot. Just a couple of months after a smaller recall of frozen shrimp was issued, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that even more bags of frozen pre-cooked shrimp are coming off the shelves due to salmonella contamination. On August 13th, 2021, the FDA issued a statement alerting consumers that Avanti Frozen Foods Pvt. Ltd, has voluntarily recalled various sizes of frozen cooked, peeled, and deveined shrimp (some of which were packaged with prepared cocktail sauce) sold in various unit sizes. This is an expansion of a prior recall issued on June 25th, 2021.
The recall is fairly substantial. The frozen shrimp products were distributed to a variety of grocery stores nationwide from November 2020 to May 2021. The brands were distributed to retailers such as Hannaford, Meijer, Target, and Whole Foods. At this time, the majority of products have not been associated with any foodborne illnesses, but are being recalled out of an abundance of caution. However in June, nine individuals in four different states including Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, and Rhode Island contracted salmonella poisoning after consuming one of the shrimp products and three people have been hospitalized, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Here’s what to look out for if you have any frozen shrimp kicking around in your freezer. The Avanti shrimp recall includes 26 different frozen shrimp products under the following brands: Big River, 365 Whole Foods, Ahold, Censea, Cos, CWNO, First Shrimp, Food Lion, Hannaford, Harbor Banks, HOS, Meijer, Nature’s Promise, Sandbar, Sea Cove, Waterfront Bistro, Wellsley Farms, and WFNO brands.
Why the concern? Well, salmonella is a bacteria with over 2,000 different strains that can cause severe illness in humans. Symptoms, which include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, headaches, and chills, can appear within 12 to 72 hours after exposure and can last for 4 to 7 days. If your symptoms persist for more than one week, or if you are pregnant, elderly, or have an otherwise compromised immune system, call your healthcare provider. At least 1.4 million Americans experience illness due to salmonella each year, according to the CDC; however, that number is likely much higher as it can be difficult to determine if an upset stomach or nausea is a result of salmonella or another form of food poisoning (or, frankly, just a result of going in for a third heaping helping of a casserole or pot pie...we’ve all been there).
Customers who have purchased any of the impacted shrimp products under one of these brands are encouraged to return them to the store of purchase for a full refund or dispose of them completely.