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Sausages recalled because they may harbor lethal bacteria

About 1,270 pounds of smoked sausage are being recalled because they may be contaminated with a bacteria that can
cause an uncommon but potentially fatal disease, the Agriculture Department said Friday.

Abe's Cajun Boudin Inc. of Sulphur, La., recalled the sausages after testing revealed they may contain Listeria monocytogenes,
which can cause listeriosis.

While no illnesses have been reported, and healthy people rarely contract listeriosis, the disease can cause high fever, severe
headaches, neck stiffness and nausea.

Listeriosis can also cause miscarriages and stillbirths, and can be potentially fatal to
people with weak immune systems -- infants, the elderly, chemotherapy patients and persons with HIV infections or other chronic diseases.

The recalled product is "Abe's Cajun Smoked Sausage (Pork and Beef)." It is available in 1-, 5- and 10-pound packages. While some packages were sent to retail stores, others went to hotels and restaurants in boxes containing two 5-pound packages.

Each package label says "EST 13251" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The date labels on the packages sent to stores read "SELL BY 12-27-99" and those distributed to hotels and restaurants read "SELL BY 11-27-99."

The USDA said consumers who purchased the sausages should return them to the store where they were bought. Anyone concerned about illness should contact a doctor immediately.

For more information consumers can call USDA's meat and poultry hot line at 1-800-535-4555. The hot line is staffed from 10 a.m. to
4 p.m. EST Monday through Friday.

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