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February 18, 1999

Media Communications Office
(202) 720-3897; FAX: (202) 690-0460

Contact: Liz Lapping
Linda Swacina
Pager: 800-759-8888
Pin 895-3573

Georgia Firm Recalls Lowell Franks and Smoked Sausages for Listeria

WASHINGTON, DC (SafetyAlerts) - Lowell Packing Co., a Fitzgerald, Ga., firm is voluntarily recalling approximately 4,500 pounds of franks and smoked sausages that may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced today.

The products are marked with packaging code 4l on the back of the package, and bear establishment number 2600 or P-2600 in the U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection seal. The products subject to the recall are:

  • Lowell Frankfurters - l pound packages;

  • Lowell Red Hots (Franks) - l pound packages; and

  • Colony City Smoked Sausages - 1 2 pound, 1 3/4 pound, and 4 pound packages.

The products were distributed in central and south Georgia, and in eastern Alabama.

"Because of the potential of foodborne illness, we urge consumers who have purchased the suspect product not to eat it and to return it to the point of purchase," said Margaret Glavin, associate administrator of USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service.

FSIS discovered the problem through its routine monitoring program for Listeria monocytogenes.

At this point, FSIS has received no reports of illness associated with this product. Also, FSIS has no evidence linking this product to the recent nationwide listeriosis outbreak, which is still under joint FSIS and CDC investigation.

Consumption of food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, an uncommon but potentially fatal disease. Healthy people rarely contract listeriosis. The most common manifestation of listeriosis is meningitis, which has symptoms of high fever, severe headache, neck stiffness, and nausea. Listeriosis can also cause miscarriages and stillbirths, as well as serious and sometimes fatal infections in those with weak immune systems--infants, the frail or elderly, and persons with chronic disease, HIV infection, or undergoing chemotherapy.

Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a physician immediately.

Consumers with questions about the recall may phone the Lowell Packing Company at 912-423-2051 for additional information.