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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Pot Pie Recall Update

You likely have heard about the cases of salmonella poisoning from Banquet brand chicken and turkey pot pies. You may NOT be aware of the following information, however:

(1) The company (ConAgra) WILL give you a refund for any pies currently in your freezer. This is contrary to reports I have heard on the local news - details are provided in the press release below.

(2) Several "generic" brands are included in this recall, including Kroger and Meijer. Look for the "P9" marking on the side of the box to determine whether or not you have these pies.

Here is the press release from ConAgra Foods:

ConAgra Foods Offers Consumer Advisory Regarding Banquet Pot Pies

OMAHA, Neb.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 9, 2007--ConAgra Foods today announced that it was contacted by state health officials regarding Banquet Turkey and Chicken Pot Pies. In cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), ConAgra Foods is advising consumers to not eat these products while the USDA and ConAgra Foods look into these concerns. This advisory pertains to Banquet brand frozen chicken or turkey pot pie products or generic store brand not-ready-to-eat pot pie products bearing the number "P-9" printed on the side of the package. The company believes the issue is likely related to consumer undercooking of the product.

If they wish, consumers may return these products to ConAgra Foods for a refund by sending the side panel of the package that contains the code "P-9" to ConAgra Foods, Dept. BQPP, P.O. Box 3768, Omaha, NE 68103-0768. If consumers prefer, they may return the product to the store from which it was purchased for a refund; consumers should discard the product prior to returning the entire package to their retail store.

The company reminds consumers that these products are not ready-to-eat, and must always be thoroughly cooked as instructed on the packages. The cooking instructions for these products are specifically designed to eliminate the presence of common pathogens found in many uncooked products. Microwave cooking times vary, depending on the wattage of the microwave, so carefully following all instructions is important.

ConAgra Foods is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to identify any additional steps that may be appropriate, including potential changes that may further clarify cooking instructions for consumers. Already, the company is revising its packaging to more clearly illustrate different cooking times for Banquet pot pies related to varying wattages of microwaves.

ConAgra Foods was advised yesterday by health officials in several states that a number of consumers had been diagnosed with salmonella that they believe is statistically associated with the consumption of Banquet chicken and turkey pot pies. Salmonella is among the common pathogens found in not-ready-to-eat poultry containing products like pot pies. Cooking instructions are designed to result in the elimination of any risk associated with salmonella.

Consumers with questions regarding the cooking of Banquet pot pies may call 1-866-484-8671 or contact us online at www.conagrafoods.com/contactus. For more information on food safety, consumers may reference IFIC.org.

The generic store brand not-ready-to-eat pot pie products bearing the number “P-9” printed on the side of the package are sold under the generic store brand names as shown below:

  • Hill Country Fare (sold at HEB);
  • Food Lion (sold at Food Lion);
  • Great Value (sold at Wal-Mart);
  • Kirkwood (sold at Aldi);
  • Kroger (sold at Kroger); and,
  • Meijer (sold at Meijer).

ConAgra Foods Inc. (NYSE:CAG) is one of North America's leading packaged food companies, serving grocery retailers, as well as restaurants and other foodservice establishments. For more information, please visit us at www.conagrafoods.com.

CONTACT: ConAgra Foods Inc.

Consumer Toll-Free Line:

Stephanie Childs, 402-595-6258
Chris Klinefelter, 402-595-4154

SOURCE: ConAgra Foods Inc.

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