Why 30,285 Pounds Of Ready-To-Eat Chicken Fillets Are Being Recalled

A complaint about potentially unsafe chicken has led to the recall of 30,285 pounds of grilled, ready-to-eat chicken breast fillets, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The fillets, which came from Decatur, Alabama-based Wayne Farms breast fillets were supposed to be fully cooked, but, according to at least one customer report, their item looked undercooked.

Created on March 1 and 21, 2022, the affected fillets were sent to restaurants through an Illinois distributor that received them. The recall applies to two varieties of Wayne Farms "All Natural Fire Grilled Chicken Breast" that come in 9-pound cases. One set of cases holds eight packages with fillets weighing 6 ounces and lists a use-by date of May 30, 2022. The other set of 9-pound cases has 12 packages with fillets weighing 4 ounces and a use-by date of June 19, 2022. According to the FSIS, the recalled cases are labeled with an establishment number "EST. 20214."

Wayne Farms recently added to its line of prepared foods with the expansion of its Decatur processing facility (which includes new freezing technology) and the addition of a "Customer Innovation Center" near its headquarters (via Wayne Farms). It aimed to ramp up poultry processing and quality in response to consumer demand.

FSIS has not confirmed any illnesses linked to these products. However, restaurants that might be storing these fillets should not serve them, but return them to where they were sold or dispose of them.

Why you should worry about undercooked chicken

Chicken is the most commonly consumed animal protein in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. With so many delicious chicken dishes out there, it's easy to see why this meat is so popular. However, when not properly cooked, it can carry illness-inducing bacteria, including Campylobacter, Clostridium perfringens, and Salmonella. Ingesting these bacteria can lead to food poisoning, which you obviously want to avoid. Unfortunately, foodborne illnesses related to poultry afflict approximately a million people in the United States yearly. They can result in symptoms like upset stomach, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever.

The CDC says chicken with an internal temperature below 165 F isn't safe to consume, so a food thermometer can come in handy to prevent undercooking. Also, although washing raw chicken sounds like a good way to get rid of bacteria, it has been shown to splash and spread potentially infected juices around your kitchen. Those fluids should also not come near foods that won't be cooked, such as salads. Any bacteria on raw chicken will be destroyed in the cooking process.

The U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) urges people to reach out to their healthcare provider if they have worried about being negatively impacted by the recalled chicken. Customers can also reach Wayne Farms, LLC spokesperson Frank Singleton by calling 678-316-4237 or emailing fes01@att.net.