A Minnesota-based poultry producer over the weekend announced a recall of 27 tons of chicken, with most of the products being pulled meats that were sold to food service outlets.
GNP Company, which generates $470 million in annual sales and books sales across most of the U.S., said the USDA Food Safety & Inspection Service issued a recall for some of the company’s products on Saturday. The affected product may have been contaminated during a product tampering incident at the company’s Cold Spring, Minn., processing plant. Local media outlets say the employee that was accused of the contamination has been fired, while GNP said law enforcement authorities are currently looking into the case.
GNP, known for the Just BARE and Gold’n Plump brands, said the one retail item being recalled was Just BARE Whole Chicken (UPC 024105594057). GNP advised those products should be disposed of or returned to the store where purchased for a refund.
The company said that a lab verified the foreign matter found in chicken appeared to be natural materials, including dirt. But because GNP couldn’t say for sure that the product was safe for consumption, a product recall was triggered.
There have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of the meats that are being recalled.
GNP’s recall comes at a time of strength for the chicken producer. Sales have steadily increased and the company has reported seven straight years of profitability. It is also in the process of completing an $80 million expansion project at the Cold Spring plant, where it is aiming to increase production capacity by 33%.