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The New Economy

Egg recall: Are your eggs on the list?

Egg recall springs from possible salmonella contamination at one of America's largest egg companies.

By / August 17, 2010

A United States Department of Agriculture inspector checks eggs at a Maine farm. Industry and government efforts have led to stricter standards and tracking to avoid contamination of eggs. In Iowa, one of the largest US egg companies has announced a nationwide egg recall because of possible salmonella contamination.

Robert F. Bukaty/AP/File

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[Editor's note: On Aug. 18, the recall was expanded to include new facilities and eggs packaged through Aug. 17. Click here for that update. For an updated list of brand names and plants involved in the egg recall as of Aug. 26, click here.]

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One of the nation's largest egg-producing companies has initiated a nationwide recall of eggs packaged from May 16 through Aug. 13 because of concerns they could be contaminated with salmonella .

The egg recall was voluntarily initiated by Wright County Eggs, based in Galt, Iowa. The company says the suspect eggs come in packages stamped with one of these three plant numbers: P1026, P1413 and P1946.

The way to tell if your eggs are part of the recall is to check the end of your egg carton. If it's stamped with one of those three numbers (the P stands for plant), then look carefully at the number that follows.

TOP 5 RECALLS: How does egg recall stack up?

If it falls anywhere between 136 to 225 (the 136th day of the year fell on May 16; day 225 was Aug. 13), take the eggs and the carton back to the store where you bought it. The store will issue a full refund.

The potentially contaminated eggs come in various sizes of packaging: from 6-egg to 18-egg cartons. They're marketed under these brands: Lucerne, Albertson, Mountain Dairy, Ralph's, Boomsma's, Sunshine, Hillandale, Trafficanda, Farm Fresh, Shoreland, Lund, Dutch Farms, and Kemps. The recall only concerns shell eggs. Other Wright County Eggs products aren't affected.

The suspect eggs were shipped to wholesalers, distribution centers, and food-service companies in only eight states (California, Illinois, Missouri, Colorado, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa). But these companies distribute nationwide, according to a Wright County Egg release, which prompted the recall to all the states.

As early as May, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) noticed a surge in cases involving a particular strain of salmonella, which in late June and early July climbed to a level about four times the seasonal average. State officials in California, Colorado, and Minnesota traced many of these cases to several restaurants and events. Further investigation by state and federal officials linked those eggs with Wright County Eggs.

Officials tested eggs at the company and found that some of them may contain the bacteria, the company said. The investigation is ongoing, according to the CDC.

TOP 5 RECALLS: How does egg recall stack up?

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