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USDA letter details unsanitary conditions at Foster Farm plants

A U.S. Department of Agriculture letter to Foster Farms highlights a series of food safety violations that may have led to the recent outbreak of salmonella that has sickened nearly 300 people across the nation.

Foster Farms was cited 12 times between Jan. 1 and Sept. 27 for fecal material on poultry carcasses and was found to have "poor sanitary dressing practices, insanitary food contact surfaces and direct product contamination."

The letter, known as a Notice of Intended Enforcement, was sent Monday and threatens to close three Foster Farm facilities deemed to be the origin of the outbreak. The company has until Thursday to respond with a plan.

Foster Farms has not replied to repeated requests for comment.

The full letter, which was obtained by The Times, can be read here.


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