Recalled meat being removed from shelves

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Supermarkets’ Association president Rajiv Diptee. – File photo by Roger Jacob

STORES have begun removing a recalled ready-to-eat product from shelves after the Health Ministry issued a voluntary recall on Thursday.

The product distributor, All Italian, issued an update on its Facebook page on Friday morning. It indicated the affected products were removed from its shelves after it was contacted by both the ministry and its supplier, Beretta, about the recall of Coppa cured meat from a specific batch.

“We would like to reassure our customers that we are complying with the instructions and have removed the Coppa. This is the Coppa 4 oz packs. The Ministry of Health has directed us that Antipasto 6 oz packs with Coppa are unaffected and safe,” All Italian said.

The ministry’s voluntary recall notice was issued on Thursday afternoon through its Chemistry, Food and Drug Division. The recall was for “an undetermined amount of ready-to-eat meat products containing Coppa, that may be under-processed and may have resulted in possible contamination with food borne pathogens.”

It continued, “Food borne pathogens such as salmonella or listeria can cause symptoms including diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, and fever within six hours to six days after eating the contaminated product.”

The products subject to recall display the establishment number “EST. M47967 or M7543B” inside the USDA mark of inspection or in inkjet print on the front of the package.

The ministry urged those who may have these recalled products to discontinue use immediately and to return the product to the place of purchase where possible.

Meanwhile, the Supermarkets’ Association president Rajiv Diptee told Newsday the issue was raised among the members and suppliers. He said assessments are ongoing to determine how much of the recalled product has been sold and if still available on shelves, it will be removed.

“For the recall issued by the Ministry of Health, we would strongly advise all retailers under the auspices of the Ministry of Health and the Consumer Affairs Division to do such in terms of refunding customers and collecting the item for disposal,” Diptee said.

“This is something that we will be working on to ensure that customers are not affected at this point.”