80K pounds of Johnston County Hams recalled after Listeria death

Smithfield, N.C. — Johnston County Hams has recalled more than 80,000 pounds of meat after at least one person died as a result of ham that was potentially contaminated with Listeria, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service.

FSIS was notified Sept. 27 that a person got sick after eating a ham product produced by Johnston County Hams, based in Smithfield. Further investigation identified a total of four listeriosis illnesses, including one death, between July 8, 2017 and Aug. 11, 2018.

Johnston County Hams said that 89,096 pounds of ready-to-eat deli loaf ham products produced between April 3, 2017 and Oct. 2, 2018 are being recalled as a result of the illnesses.

The following products are subject to the recall:

  • Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Johnston County Hams, Inc. country style fully cooked boneless deli ham”
  • Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Ole Fashioned Sugar Cured The Old Dominion Brand Hams Premium Fully Cooked Country Ham” with Sell-By dates from 4/10/2018 to 9/27/2019.
  • Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Padow’s Hams & Deli, Inc. fully cooked country ham boneless glazed with brown sugar.”
  • Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Premium Fully Cooked Country Ham Less Salt Distributed By: Valley Country Hams LLC” with sell-by dates from 4/10/2018 to 9/27/2019.
  • Varying weights of 7 to 8-lbs. plastic-wrapped “Goodnight Brothers Country Ham Boneless Fully Cooked.”

FSIS said officials are working to determine if additional illnesses are linked to Johnston County Ham products.

“Safety is a top priority for Johnston County Hams and we have issued a voluntary recall of our ready-to-eat deli loaf ham products. We are deeply saddened that consumers were harmed by our products. We are committed to identifying the root cause and taking proper corrective actions in close collaboration with the USDA and CDC. In addition, we have notified our distribution partners and will continue efforts to notify the public,” Johnston County Hams said in a statement. 

Symptoms of Listeriosis include fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions sometimes preceded by diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms.

In pregnant women, the infection can cause miscarriages, stillbirths, premature delivery or life-threatening infections in the newborn.

FSIS urges consumers to throw out any contaminated products and to check their freezers for any frozen Johnston County Ham products that may be included in the recall.

Consumers with questions regarding the recall can Rufus Brown, Johnston County Hams plant manager, at .