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Plastic Pieces Prompt Chicken Nugget Recall

Georgia-based Perdue Farms is recalling over 15,000 pounds of frozen chicken nuggets after discovering that the nuggets may be contaminated with "extraneous material."

Perdue recalled the nuggets after receiving reports from consumers about small pieces of plastic found inside the products, reports Food Safety News.

What Products are Recalled?

According to the United States Department of Agriculture press release, the recall includes eight-ounce boxes of Applegate Naturals chicken nuggets bearing the establishment number "P2617" inside the USDA Mark of Inspection. The USDA has posted pictures of the product packaging on the Food Safety and Inspection Service website.

The boxes of chicken nuggets being recalled were shipped nationwide. The nuggets were produced in February and have a sell-by date of February 5th, 2015. The USDA warns that since the nuggets are a frozen product, consumers may still have the product in their freezers.

Class II Recall

When inspections or consumer reports cause safety concerns regarding a food product, a food recall is initiated. These recalls are typically initiated by the manufacturer or distributor of the products, but can also be requested by the USDA or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

In this case, Perdue initiated the recall after learning of the possible contamination from consumers. The product was withdrawn from the market on August 8th, and so far, there have been no reports of illness or injury associated with the recalled product.

The recall classification is based on the possible risk of injury presented by a product, so when the probability of injury associated with the recalled product is low, the recall is classified by the USDA as a Class II. There are three classes of recalls, with Class I being the most dangerous -- where there is a reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause adverse health consequences or death -- and Class III being the lowest, where the products will not cause any adverse health consequences. Class II recalls, like this chicken nugget recall, are defined as situations where there is a remote, but possible, chance that adverse health consequences will result from use of the product.

The USDA recommends that consumers with questions about the recall should contact Gerry Clarkson, Applegate Consumer Relations Specialist at (800) 587-5858.

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