Nowadays it seems like there is a food recall in the news nearly every week. Here is some basic information on how to stay on top of the latest food recalls so that you can avoid potential health problems stemming from consuming recalled food.
Why are certain foods recalled?
The three main reasons why foods are recalled include:
- Discovery of an organism (such as certain kinds of bacteria) in the product which may make consumers sick
- Discovery of a potential allergen in a product
- Mislabeling or misbranding of foods. For example, a food may contain an allergen, such as nuts or eggs, but those ingredients don’t appear or aren’t properly disclosed on the label.
What is the best way to get the latest information about food recalls?
- Food recall notices are given in the news, at your local grocery store, or online at www.recalls.gov.
- Sign up for automatic email alerts at www.recalls.gov.
What should you do if you purchased a product that was recalled?
If you find that the product details in the recall notice match the details on the food product you have at home, do not open or consume that food product. Instead, you should do one of the following:
- Return the product to the place of purchase for a refund
- Dispose of the product following the instructions provided in the recall notice to ensure that it won’t be consumed by anyone
The best way to protect yourself and your family is to stay informed of the latest food recall information and to follow the specific guidance issued in the recall notice.
If you’re a Health Advocate member with access to the Wellness Coaching program, reach out to your Wellness Coach for more information on food safety.
Have a question for a Health Advocate? Email firstname.lastname@example.org, and your question may be the topic of an upcoming “Ask a Health Advocate” column!