Smoked Salmon produced by Dutch company Foppen has been linked to several cases of salmonella illness in the Netherlands and suspected in illnesses in the US, as well. The company sells under their own brand in Europe but distributes to Costco in the US for sales under the Kirkland Signature brand.
In the Netherlands, the salmon has been linked to at least 200 cases of illness and possibly more, according to the Netherlands’ National Institute for Public Health and the Environment. The salmonella is of the strain Salmonella Thompson and like any salmonella infection can lead to fever, vomiting and diarrhea. Although no cases in the US have been conclusively linked to the smoked salmon sold at Costco, a representative for the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control Prevention, Lola Russell, says the federal agency has 85 recorded cases of the same strain from 27 states starting from July 1. Without an outbreak, she said the average number of such cases over that time would be about 30. So, needless to say this product is being investigated as the suspected cause.
As of Monday afternoon, Costco had pulled the smoked salmon from their shelves and blocked the sale of the item from registers (no chance of getting any now). Craig Wilson, vice president of food safety at Costco, said that Costco has also been conducting their own independent testing of the smoked salmon but as yet has not had any positive results for salmonella. Costco has also not received any reports of illnesses. All customers who have purchased the KS smoked salmon will be notified via phone (robocalls with an automated message), as well as a letter.
If you have purchased the KS smoked salmon, I definitely would not eat it and would take it back to Costco for a refund. Unfortunately, Costco does not have the recall letter or additional information such as product numbers or dates available on their website at this time, but be safe and don’t eat your smoked salmon from Costco US stores. I’ll post a link to the letter or any other information as I get it.