Why experts say you should take food recalls seriously

NOW: Why experts say you should take food recalls seriously

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- In just the last month, major recalls have been announced for products like cantaloupe and applesauce pouches.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration sets certain standards to make sure the food we bring home from the store is safe.

Experts say it's important that people take all food recalls seriously. "Do you really want to spend a couple of hours in the bathroom with gastrointestinal problems or worse?" said Kathleen Glass, a scientist and associate director at the UW-Madison Food Research Institute.

Glass says they work directly with the food industry in helping them evaluate what potential microbial food safety risks they might have. "Then we go through and help them try to identify what are going to be some intervention strategies so they can make their food safe," she said.

Our groceries go through extensive checks and balances and when something is deemed unsafe, the public is notified. We see this with food recalls issued by the FDA.

Glass says over the last six years, the number of food recalls has been pretty steady, but it wasn't always this way.

"Where we did see an uptick was probably around 2015 through like 2018 and that's because there was initiation for new regulations specifically it was the Food Safety Modernization Act," she said.

Most recently, we've seen large recalls of cantaloup such as Malichita and Rudy brand due to possible salmonella contamination. At least eight people died.

And this month, WanaBana brand cinnamon applesauce pouches possibly linked to lead poisoning. The CDC and FDA are investigating after hundreds of kids got sick.

Glass says it's important to heed the warnings. "We're doing this for public health and so we want you to protect yourself and not ignore it," she said.

Click here for the latest food recalls from the FDA.

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