The recall was flagged up by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on May 25. The FDA describes Listeria monocytogenes as "an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems". It also cautions that it can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.
Products affected by the recall, which carry designated lot number 10803, are: 4oz Sockeye Nova Lox (frozen) under Jensen's Old Fashion Smokehouse brand; 500g Cold Smoked Sockeye Salmon Tray (frozen) for foodservice customers; and 4oz Atlantic Lox, under the Raley's brand (fresh).
In addition 1lb Keta Lox, 2lb Keta Lox Trim, 2lb Salmon Lox Trim, 2lb Sockeye Lox Trim, 3oz Keta Retail Box, 3lb Atlantic Salmon Tray, 4oz Wild Keta Lox, 8oz Salmon Lox Norwegian Style, all with lot number 10803 and all under the Sea Passion brand, are also being recalled.
The products were distributed through retail stores across 10 US states: Arkansas; Arizona; California; Idaho; Michigan; Nevada; New York; Ohio; Oregon and Washington. All are packed in vacuum bags, with lot number information is on the back. No illnesses have been reported so far.
In other news, the US Food Marketing Institute (FMI) last week participated in a US Department of Agriculture and FDA public meeting regarding interagency risk assessment for Listeria monocytogenes in retail delicatessens.
Dr Hilary Thesmar, vice president of food safety programmes at FMI, shared the food retail industry's history with the agencies to responsibly address and minimise the risk of Listeria in supermarket delis.
"The food retail industry has taken responsible action to minimise the risk for the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes, which is why FMI has already started to use the academic findings by developing a 'Listeria Action Plan' for retail.
"This simple document is designed by retail food safety experts to take the most impactful, actionable steps and interventions and make them practical for use in any retail deli ... we hope that this inclusive model will be adopted in the future."