Claim: Nestlé has recalled some HOT POCKETS brand products due to possible contaminated beef issues.
Examples:[Collected via e-mail, February 2014]
There is a link going around on facebook about hot pockets doing a big recall on some of their products because they contain diseased and
unsound animal bits. Is this true?
Origins: On 18 February 2014, Nestlé USA issued a voluntary recall notice for their HOT POCKETS brand of "Philly Steak and Cheese" and "Croissant Crust Philly Steak and Cheese" food products in specific sizes:
Nestlé USA's Prepared Foods Division today announced the voluntary recall of HOT POCKETS® brand Philly Steak and Cheese in three different pack sizes and HOT POCKETS® brand Croissant Crust Philly Steak and Cheese, in the two pack box.
The voluntary recall is limited to these two products, which were distributed nationwide. No other batches, sizes, including multi-packs, or varieties of HOT POCKETS® brand products are affected by this recall.
This move was prompted by an issue involving the Rancho Feeding Corporation, a supplier who was required by the USDA to recall approximately 8.7 million pounds of beef products because the company "processed diseased and unsound animals and carried out these activities without the benefit or full benefit of federal inspection":
Rancho Feeding Corporation, a Petaluma, Calif. establishment, is recalling approximately 8,742,700 pounds, because it processed diseased and unsound animals and carried out these activities without the benefit or full benefit of federal inspection. Thus, the products are adulterated, because they are unsound, unwholesome or otherwise are unfit for human food and must be removed from commerce, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced
Beef carcasses and boxes bear the establishment number "EST. 527" inside the USDA mark of inspection. Each box bears the case code number ending in "3" or "4." The products were produced Jan. 1, 2013 through Jan. 7, 2014 and shipped to distribution centers and retail establishments nationwide.
FSIS has received no reports of illness due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an illness should contact a health care provider.
Nestlé issued the recall because one of their HOT POCKETS production facilities utilized a "small quantity of meat" obtained from the Rancho Feeding Corporation:
Our teams at Nestlé have reviewed our vendor records and have determined that one Nestlé brand has been impacted by the Rancho meat recall.
While Nestlé did not purchase meat directly from Rancho, our procurement teams worked with our supply chain to understand whether any company in this chain may have purchased meat from Rancho Feeding at any time during 2013, the period of time covered by the Rancho Feeding recall.
From this review, we have confirmed that a small quantity of meat from Rancho was used at Nestlé’s Chatsworth, California production operation, a facility devoted entirely to HOT POCKETS® brand sandwiches. The affected batches of the two varieties in our range of HOT POCKETS® brand sandwiches are being removed from the marketplace.
Consumers who may have purchased the affected batches of HOT POCKETS® brand Philly Steak and Cheese should not consume the product, but instead should return it to the place of purchase for a full refund or contact Nestlé Consumer Services at (800) 392-4057.
The consumer UPCs, batch codes, and "Best Before" dates of the affected HOT POCKETS products are listed in Nestlé's press release.