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bbqjoe
11-01-2007, 06:57 PM
5 million frozen pizzas recalled

The Associated Press
Nov. 1, 2007 02:41 PM
MINNEAPOLIS - General Mills on Thursday recalled about 5 million frozen pizzas sold nationwide under the Totino's and Jeno's labels because of possible E. coli contamination.

The problem may have come from pepperoni on pizzas produced at a General Mills plant in Ohio, the suburban Minneapolis-based company said. It said the pepperoni itself came from a separate supplier, not produced at the plant itself.

The voluntary recall covers pizzas containing pepperoni that have been produced since July, when the first of 21 E. coli illnesses under investigation by state and federal authorities emerged.
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Nine of the 21 people reported eating Totino's or Jeno's pizza with pepperoni topping at some point before becoming ill. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that eight of the victims have been hospitalized, and four have developed a type of kidney failure.

Eight of the cases were reported in Tennessee, with the other cases found in smaller numbers in Kentucky, Missouri, New York, Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin and South Dakota.

"We took action on that basis as a precaution, because of the possibility that a link might exist," said General Mills spokesman Tom Forsythe. "However, to date we have found no E. coli in our plant, and we have found no E. coli in our products."

The company asks consumers to throw away recalled pizzas. They can get replacements by clipping the bar code from the box and mailing it with their name and address to Totino's/Jeno's, P.O. Box 200 - Pizza, Minneapolis, MN 55440-0200.

Symptoms of E. coli can include stomach cramps and diarrhea. People typically are ill for two to five days but can develop complications including kidney failure.

In late September, the Topps Meat Co. recalled 21.7 million pounds of frozen hamburger patties after 40 people in eight states got sick from contaminated beef believed to have been imported from Canada. The New Jersey-based company shut down several days later.

The specific products in the recall, with SKU, include:

Totino's Party Supreme, 42800-10700.

Totino's Three Meat, 42800-10800.

Totino's Pepperoni, 42800-11400.

Totino's Pepperoni, 42800-92114.

Totino's Classic Pepperoni, 42800-11402.

Totino's Pepperoni Trio, 42800-72157.

Totino's Party Combo, 42800-11600.

Totino's Combo, 42800-92116.

Jeno's Crisp n Tasty Supreme, 35300-00561.

Jeno's Crisp n Tasty Pepperoni, 35300-00572.

Jeno's Crisp n Tasty Combo, 35300-00576.

Kung Fu BBQ
11-01-2007, 07:52 PM
This is just amazing. Is it that the companies are sloppier or that we are catching these problems easier. I find it really hard to believe that we went decades without these kinds of food scares and all of a sudden no one knows how to handle food properly.
Food shortages, food contamination....you know what it is, they are getting us primed for soilent green!!!

http://nosf.net/images/2006/12/soylent%20green.jpg

StLouQue
11-01-2007, 08:11 PM
This is just amazing. Is it that the companies are sloppier or that we are catching these problems easier. I find it really hard to believe that we went decades without these kinds of food scares and all of a sudden no one knows how to handle food properly.

I have a theory...SHORTCUTS.

Thanks for the heads-up, bbqjoe.

Sledneck
11-01-2007, 08:35 PM
I have another theory....world wide web that and people had stronger stomachs back in the day

bbqjoe
11-02-2007, 12:17 PM
bump!

BBQ40
11-02-2007, 01:22 PM
im glad i gave up on frozen pizzas. i used to eat a bunch of em in college. there were always bad news.

smoke-n-my-i's
11-02-2007, 03:00 PM
I still say that it is GREED ! ! ! !

The production companies know that the more they produce and ship, the more money they make. Down time for cleaning, sanitizing, is lost production. Lost production is lost money. Why take 30 minutes a shift to clean the machines of meat that has been on there all day, why sanitize the floors, why.....

That, and a lot of the workers, are NOT washing their hands after going to the bathroom.... If you don't believe me, the next time you are out, and go to the bathroom, just notice who goes in, and doesn't wash their hands and just leaves.... you will be amazed if you take the time to notice. Think about that the next time you are shopping in the meat department, fresh veggies, etc....

It is past time that the American production companies wake up....

Ok, my rant for the day.... my $0.02 worth....

Bill

backyardchef
11-02-2007, 04:27 PM
I still say that it is GREED ! ! ! !

The production companies know that the more they produce and ship, the more money they make. Down time for cleaning, sanitizing, is lost production. Lost production is lost money. Why take 30 minutes a shift to clean the machines of meat that has been on there all day, why sanitize the floors, why.....

That, and a lot of the workers, are NOT washing their hands after going to the bathroom.... If you don't believe me, the next time you are out, and go to the bathroom, just notice who goes in, and doesn't wash their hands and just leaves.... you will be amazed if you take the time to notice. Think about that the next time you are shopping in the meat department, fresh veggies, etc....

It is past time that the American production companies wake up....

Ok, my rant for the day.... my $0.02 worth....

Bill

True, and the centralization of the food chain into ever larger mega-farms and corporations combined with a willfull disregard of simple safety precautions that can be taken because of the cost associated with them.

If the employers don't give a crap about their employees, why would they care about the quality of the product that they unleash on the public. There is little incentive to be careful, but there is plenty of incentive to mechanize and streamline production practices while paying employees less and less......

Bill-Chicago
11-02-2007, 04:53 PM
If the employers don't give a crap about their employees, why would they care about the quality of the product that they unleash on the public. There is little incentive to be careful, but there is plenty of incentive to mechanize and streamline production practices while paying employees less and less......

I don't think I can agree with you on this Matt.

In fact, I think this line of thinking is the exception not the norm.

I can't go into too much detail, because of my personal involvement with ownership on this industry, but let me just say that the workers in our factories are part of the same compensation and benefits package that I am in.

Although these two brands in question are not part of our system, pizza is a finished product and there is a ton of quality control that we must adhere to. Banks also don't like to be involved with shoddy companies. We need an inspected and maintained process in place in order to secure financing.

We package quite a few brands, so it doesnt suprise me that there is more than one brand involved (similar to the Topps burger problem)

We also have a member here who has a very impressive process in place for making ungodly amounts of pizza dough for the Dominos, Ceasars, etc of the world. It's not about speed, its also about safety.

And if one doesn't think we spend the time to properly clean, sanatize, and maintain our processing equipment, your dillusional. Right now, the machines of the packagers of these pizza lines are shut down. These are $80million machines. No one is making money now.

There is too much risk, health risk and investment risk, to not properly care fore the equipment and product.

Are there unscrupulous packagers out there? Of course, I am not naive.

But to just immediately yell greed or label companies don't give a crsp about employees, just might also be naive.

I also fully acknowlede that these two brands in question are at the lowest end of the frozen pizza spectrum, where possible corners appear to need to be cut to make a profit. But if these packagers also do the higher end stuff, they do not benefit from cutting corners, because now ALL of their lines are stopped until recertified.

I guess my comment is from personal experience, to not over generalize, is all

backyardchef
11-02-2007, 05:05 PM
Bill--

Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. I think, in this case, the pizza maker isn't really the problem, but the people that made the pepperoni topping. Meat packers, produce packagers, etc...are being consolidated and that makes it easier for product to be contaminated along the way. One bad apple.....I don't think that can be so easily dismissed. I haven't heard anything to convince me otherwise-- meaning from other sources, not you Bill.

That being said, the major supermarket brand end users and packagers have much more of an incentive to be careful and are carefully regulated, as far as I know. They have much more at stake. Hormel, Sara Lee or Jeno's (or whoever may at this point own them) are very different from the people way on down the totem pole that are breaking down beef carcasses and pulling the spinach in the field.....Often, from what we've been seeing, that's where the problems really start. Once contaminated product enters the factory, there isn't much of anything Jeno's or whoever can do.

Bill-Chicago
11-02-2007, 05:16 PM
I am now clear Matt.

We package 15+ brands (from all different companies who outsource that part of the business to us) at one of our shops.

We have a oven or a packaging line go down, we fark ourselves 15 times over..

I understand what you are saying, and I probably need to slow down when I read.

I was just so excited with my first food handling post, that I got a bit excited.

Jumping Puppy Mod

backyardchef
11-02-2007, 05:17 PM
I understand what you are saying, and I probably need to slow down when I read.

I was just so excited with my first food handling post, that I got a bit excited.

Jumping Puppy Mod

Not at all. I think that you make a valid point that there are many responsible food manufacturers out there, and that big business isn't always out to hurt their employees. My post did sound like a blanket condemnation of the industry.....

Papa Hogg
11-02-2007, 05:21 PM
I have another theory....world wide web that and people had stronger stomachs back in the day

Agreed...with all the hand sanitizers & disinfectant wipes, ect out there today our bodies are not building up the immunities & resistence to these bacterias & germs that our forefathers did.

I don't think I can agree with you on this Matt.

In fact, I think this line of thinking is the exception not the norm.

I can't go into too much detail, because of my personal involvement with ownership on this industry, but let me just say that the workers in our factories are part of the same compensation and benefits package that I am in.

Although these two brands in question are not part of our system, pizza is a finished product and there is a ton of quality control that we must adhere to. Banks also don't like to be involved with shoddy companies. We need an inspected and maintained process in place in order to secure financing.

We package quite a few brands, so it doesnt suprise me that there is more than one brand involved (similar to the Topps burger problem)

We also have a member here who has a very impressive process in place for making ungodly amounts of pizza dough for the Dominos, Ceasars, etc of the world. It's not about speed, its also about safety.

And if one doesn't think we spend the time to properly clean, sanatize, and maintain our processing equipment, your dillusional. Right now, the machines of the packagers of these pizza lines are shut down. These are $80million machines. No one is making money now.

There is too much risk, health risk and investment risk, to not properly care fore the equipment and product.

Are there unscrupulous packagers out there? Of course, I am not naive.

But to just immediately yell greed or label companies don't give a crsp about employees, just might also be naive.

I also fully acknowlede that these two brands in question are at the lowest end of the frozen pizza spectrum, where possible corners appear to need to be cut to make a profit. But if these packagers also do the higher end stuff, they do not benefit from cutting corners, because now ALL of their lines are stopped until recertified.

I guess my comment is from personal experience, to not over generalize, is all

Here here Bill, well said! The anti-capitalist out there always want to blame big business & love to throw bombs out there that have no facts to support their bomb throwing.

Bill-Chicago
11-02-2007, 05:23 PM
Not at all. I think that you make a valid point that there are many responsible food manufacturers out there, and that big business isn't always out to hurt their employees. My post did sound like a blanket condemnation of the industry.....


You want some free frozen pizza coupons?

I know a guy

:twisted:

Papa Hogg
11-02-2007, 05:25 PM
More post arrived as I was reading & responding...Thanks for clarifying Matt, I read your first post the same way Bill did :biggrin:

Papa Hogg
11-02-2007, 05:27 PM
You want some free frozen pizza coupons?

I know a guy

:twisted:

Sure send 'em my way...I never quit drinking the tap water in Milwaukee during the crypto scare of 1993. What doesn't kill ya makes you stronger!

ZBQ
11-04-2007, 12:59 AM
Bill--

Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. I think, in this case, the pizza maker isn't really the problem, but the people that made the pepperoni topping. Meat packers, produce packagers, etc...are being consolidated and that makes it easier for product to be contaminated along the way. One bad apple.....I don't think that can be so easily dismissed. I haven't heard anything to convince me otherwise-- meaning from other sources, not you Bill.

That being said, the major supermarket brand end users and packagers have much more of an incentive to be careful and are carefully regulated, as far as I know. They have much more at stake. Hormel, Sara Lee or Jeno's (or whoever may at this point own them) are very different from the people way on down the totem pole that are breaking down beef carcasses and pulling the spinach in the field.....Often, from what we've been seeing, that's where the problems really start. Once contaminated product enters the factory, there isn't much of anything Jeno's or whoever can do.

I agree Mark.

Having worked in a ketchup factory (and visited tomato and green bean canning plants a few Heinze plants too)for about 4 years I can speak from experience. The problems many times start with the harvesting of the ingredients, not necessarily with the production plants. The ketchup factory I worked at was a mass producer and we put 36 different labels on the same exact ketchup. The more mechanized the harvesting becomes the less selectivity there is and therefore more undesirable produce makes it through to the production plant. The general public most likely has no idea that there is actually an "acceptable" amount of mold for ketchup! This is because the mechanized picking of the tomatoes can't sort out the ones with bottom rot. The test for the mold is only done AFTER the ketchup has been cooked. I have seen batches that were over the threshold of acceptable mold so we split the 1500 gallon batch into 2 tanks and mixed in half a batch that we knew was under the threshold so we could effectively dilute the mold and salvage the batch.

The consolidation and centralization of the food products into the so called "mega-farms" is a MASSIVE train wreck waiting to happen in my opinion. This type of practice is exactly why we are seeing such astronomical numbers of products being recalled.

The "one bad apple" that you mentioned above Mark hits the nail on the head. One or two cows in a mega farm with Mad Cow can effectively wipe out a large portion of the beef supply in short order and when you consider how many different products that beef from the mega farm is used in it can have exponential effects on MANY different food products. Kind of like a spider web effect. Same with chickens and Bird Flu. We saw that recently. How may MILLIONS of chickens were disposed of because of these practices?

They could learn a lot from nature. Animals that are gregarious by nature have a similar problem. Ducks and Geese being two that come to mind when they are in their nesting grounds in Canada's pot hole region. It is a common problem that if a particular disease ( Leucocytozoonosis being a particularly nasty one) effects a few individuals that the entire flock is in danger and sometimes many thousands die from one small disease out break. Much the same principle for mega-farms.

There's a lot to be said of the safety and quality of locally raised produce and livestock on small family farms.

I try to buy this way if possible.

Just my .02 cents .......well...I guess it stretched into about .75 cents.....sorry:oops:

smoke-n-my-i's
11-04-2007, 05:54 PM
The reason I jumped in also, is I worked in a candy factory doing maintenance for a while. They would do a "light" cleaning once per shift, they were given 15 minutes at the end of the shift.... WOW, what can really be done in that amount of time....

Then about once a month, only because the crud was so think and the machines were so gummed up, they would do a thorough cleaning and scrub down....

My brother works at a citrus plant in FL. It has downsized so much in the last couple of years, and his pay has been cut as well. You should hear some of his stories about cleaning there....... you wouldn't want any more orange juice ever again......

Each company is different, and I am sure there a few good ones out there, but the few bad ones make a bad impression on them all....

Maybe some of these recalls are really a farce, just to drive the price up.... you is to say, that it isn't for sure. Recall it, repackage it and sell it again under a different name.... and if they do dump it, there is a shortage, and just another excuse to have to charge more.... supply and demand. Just my $0.02 worth on that one....

Bill