If you recently purchased a package of Jimmy Dean's Heat 'n Serve Original Sausage Links, take a closer look at the product label and be prepared to toss it out.
On Monday, CITI Foods (which distributes Jimmy Dean meats) announced that it recalled just over 29,000 pounds of its 23.4-ounce frozen, pre-cooked sausage packs made with pork and turkey. The recall affects just over 2,800 cases of the product.
According to Jimmy Dean and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the company decided to "voluntarily recall" the entire lot of products produced and packaged on Aug. 4 after it received five phone calls from customers complaining they found metal pieces inside.
Company spokesman Worth Sparkman told TODAY Food that the product in question was distributed to the following states: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.
According to a statement from the company, the matter found inside the sausage packages was described as "small, string-like fragments of metal."
Thus far, there have been no reported injuries or bad reactions from anyone who ate the sausages. As of Tuesday, Jimmy Dean had yet to post about the recall on its official Facebook page, which currently has almost 400,000 followers.
Earlier this year, however, other frozen meat products were recalled for possibly containing metal bits. One recall, issued by Wayne Farms, LLC, included 11 different types of ready-to-eat, frozen chicken and totaled nearly 450,000 pounds of poultry. Another recall that occurred back in April affected about 135,000 pounds of Banquet Salisbury Steaks sold and distributed by Conagra Brands.
Sometimes, a food company is able to quickly identify what caused the mishap, like when Sabrett's hot dog recall over potential bone fragment contamination was quickly blamed on an issue with faulty equipment installation.
Sparkman told TODAY that the source of the metal fragments affecting the Jimmy Dean packages produced on Aug. 4 has not yet been determined but the company is working closely with CITI Foods and the USDA to monitor the recall process.
In the meantime, customers are being advised to carefully check their packages of Heat 'n Serve sausage links to make sure they're OK to eat.
Is your sausage safe? Here what you need to know.
"Each [recalled] package bears the establishment code M19085 or P19085, a 'use by' date of Jan. 31, 2019 and a UPC number of '0-77900-36519-5.' Cases containing the product are marked with the lot number A638216800 or A638216801," Jimmy Dean said in the statement.
The company advised customers who may have purchased any of the affected products to cut the "UPC" or bar code from the package, throw out the rest of the product and call (855)-382-3101 to report it.
Jimmy Dean's customer service line, which is currently accepting inquiries about this recall and other product issues, is open between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. CT.