Trader Joe's is being forced to recall three different salad products due to potential Listeria or Salmonella contamination. This is the second time this year the grocery chain has had to recall salads over potential digestive parasites.
In a statement, Trader Joe's announced that four of their products may have been contaminated by tainted onion or corn containing Listeria monocytogenes and/or Salmonella.
While most of the problem products are contained to a handful of states, every Trader Joe's shopper across the US should discard or return for refund their "Trader Joe's Carnitas with Salsa Verde Burrito," regardless of best-buy date.
Three other products - "Mexicali Inspired Salad," "BBQ Flavored Chicken Salad,"and "Field Fresh Chopped Salad with Grilled Chicken Breast" - are also being recalled. Customers who bought these products in Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennesse, and Texas should dispose of them or return them for a full refund. Only certain "best buy" dates for these products are affected (see the list below), but it may be best to be safe rather than sorry, in this case.
Trader Joe's was quick to make clear this is still all precautionary - no contamination has been confirmed, and no illnesses have been reported.
In August of this year, Trader Joe's, as well as Kroger and Walgreen's, had to recall salads, wraps, and sandwiches that may have contained contaminated lettuce. Fresh Express, which had been supplying lettuce to Caito Foods which was, in turn, distributing meals to the three above-mentioned businesses, was having its lettuce-based products recalled over what the FSIS says was "an abundance of caution."
It seems that these recalls are, in general, the result of people being extremely careful with the general public's health, for which we're all very grateful. There's no indication at all that Trader Joe's is in any way responsible for the outbreaks, if they really are happening.
Still, it's a good lesson for everyone - be aware of any food recalls going on, and check your best-by dates!