Simmons Prepared Foods Finds Metal in Chicken and Recalls over 2 Million Pounds
United States Department of Agriculture has reported that Simmons Prepared Foods has recalled over two million pounds of chicken that may have been contaminated with metal. It was produced from Oct. 21 to Nov. 4 and was shipped to locations in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Georgia, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania, according to the U.S.D.A.
Most of the chicken products are bulk packed and shipped to “industrial business customers,” according to Donny Epp, a company spokesman.
“These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase,” the U.S.D.A. said in a statement on Wednesday.
“We are working closely with regulatory authorities and affected customers to expedite this product recall,” Simmons said Wednesday.
In January, Tyson Food recalled more than 36,000 pounds of chicken nuggets because they found pieces of rubber in the food. Then, in March, Tyson recalled 69,093 pounds of frozen chicken strips after two people said they found pieces of metal in the chicken.
Pamela Koch, a professor of nutrition ecology at Teachers College, Columbia University said, "the ever speedier distribution of mass produced food would make large recalls more and more likely." Food recalls are happening “all the time,” she said, and because the volumes produced during a given day or week are getting larger, the recalls are getting larger as well.
Americans spend the lowest percentage of their income on food compared with people in similarly large countries so it is necessary to give them more for less, “To do that, food gets mixed together in larger batches,” she said. “It is very easy to spread contamination to a lot of food, and that food is getting distributed very quickly to multiple states.”
“If we want to eat well for our health, the environment, to decrease climate change and to minimize food safety changes,” people have to consume smaller, more locally distributed food, Professor Koch said.
“The only way that could be accomplished is if food becomes more expensive and it takes more to accomplish that.”