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700,000 bags of popcorn pulled for listeria risk

Dale and Thomas Popcorn

Several flavors and sizes of bagged Popcorn, Indiana-brand popcorn have been recalled because the products may be contaminated with listeria.

Dale and Thomas Popcorn of Englewood, N.J., is recalling nearly 700,000 bags of its flavored snacks because they may have been contaminated with listeria during the production process.

The gourmet popcorn maker is voluntarily recalling 14 flavors of its "Popcorn, Indiana" products made between Aug. 8 and Sept. 25 after detecting listeria on some mechanical equipment, said company spokesman Travis Ferber.

“A handful” of illnesses possibly related to the product have been reported but not confirmed, Ferber said.

The recall includes several sizes of ready-to-eat gourmet popcorn in the following flavors: aged white cheddar, almond biscotti, American cheese, apple crisp, bacon ranch, black-and-white drizzle, caramel, caramel roasted peanuts, chocolate peanut butter, cinnamon sugar drizzle, dark fudge chocolate chip drizzle, kettlecorn, salt and pepper and wasabi reserve.

The products have "Best By" dates of Feb. 4, 2013 through March 12, 2013.

Because the recall is limited to specific sizes of bags with certain "Best By" dates, consumers should check the list of affected products, linked here, to see whether their snacks are included. Consumers can return recalled products to the place of purchase for a full refund or replacement.

The potentially dangerous bacterium, listeria monocytogenes, was not believed to come from the source products such as the popcorn or the flavorings, Ferber said. However, the contamination from the equipment appears to have spread to the food, he added.

Listeria can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in children, pregnant women, elderly people and those with compromised immune systems. Symptoms include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.

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