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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

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Why do we still have food recalls and outbreaks of food-related illness?

Unpredictable events, mechanical and human error, and environmental conditions all play a role in the problems we continue to see in food production, processing, and distribution. FDA works with industry to ensure products that may cause harm are recalled as quickly as possible. Recalling a food product may mean that a problem has been caught early before it has a chance to become an even greater one.


Unfortunately, as systems for detecting foodborne illness evolve and improve, the very organisms at the root of much of foodborne illness also continue to evolve. So, we find these organisms under circumstances in which we have never seen them before. However, FDA continues to work hard to detect problems earlier so foodborne illnesses can be prevented.

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