When you find bone fragments in your sausage, your response is probably not “Bone appétit.” Instead, it’s likely going to be more like “Bone-how-did-this-end-up-here?” So, after customers found bone fragments in its ready-to-eat blended meat and poultry smoked sausage, it’s not surprising that Hillshire Brands Company has issued a recall of its product. This recall will encompass approximately 15,876 pounds of blended meat and poultry smoked sausage products, according to a September 2 announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). That’s not an insignificant amount of sausage.
So before you engage in any type of sausage fest, check the package of your sausage. If it came in a 14-ounce cryovac package labeled with the words “Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage Made With Pork, Turkey, Beef,” then it may be part of the recall. This package should have contained only one rope of sausage. You should be able to find the following establishment number, line number and time of production on the package as well: “EST. 756A 20 19:00:00 through 21:59:59 and EST. 756A 21 19:00:00 through 21:59:59.” And the “Use by date” will be “November 11, 2023,” although in this case, the use by date should be “Never,” because you don’t want to risk eating bone fragments.
So, if you “sausage” things on your package, either throw away the product or return it to the company for a refund. It will be important to check your refrigerator and freezer, too, because who knows what you may have left and forgotten there. This can be especially the case if you tend to have things in your freezer that are from other decades ago. You don’t want to be using this product long after the recall was issued simply because you couldn’t recall the recall.
That’s because eating something that may have unanticipated bones in it is not a good idea. You’ll rarely here someone say, “I liked that sausage, especially the crunchy bone fragments in it.” Plus, chewing on and swallowing pieces of bone can have harmful effects on your health. Sure, the bone fragments may just pass through your gastrointestinal tract so that a day or two later, poop there is. However, depending on how large and how sharp the bone fragment is, it could end up damaging your teeth or causing lacerations or other damage in different parts of your gastrointestinal tract, ranging from your mouth all the way down to where the sun don’t shine. The bone fragments could also get caught up somewhere along the way, leading to obstruction. That’s another reason why when someone offers you a chicken wing or drumstick, you don’t just put the whole thing in your mouth and start chewing. In fact, according to the USDA FSIS announcement, one person has already reported suffering an oral injury from trying to eat the Hillshire Brands product subject to the recall.
The USDA FSIS announcement didn’t make clear the specific “link” between the sausage and how the bone fragments got there in the first place. Perhaps the animal bones were not completely removed from the meat during the process of making the sausage.
The recalled items were all produced on June 14, 2023, and shipped to retail stores in California, Maryland, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. So if you bought sausage sometime since mid-June from a store in one of those states, you may want to check your sausage and make sure that it not part of the approximately 15,876 pounds of blended meat and poultry smoked sausage products.