NEW YORK, Nov. 9 (UPI) -- New York City health department officials identified 56 cases of salmonella bacteria-related illness linked to MealMart brand kosher broiled chicken livers.
Health officials said even though they are labeled as "broiled" and may appear cooked, chicken livers from the Schreiber Processing Corp. are not thoroughly cooked and should not be eaten unless they are cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Salmonella illness has also been linked to chopped liver made from this uncooked product in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Minnesota, officials said.
"MealMart has issued a recall of this product and is cooperating with the health department's investigation. Chopped liver made by the consumer after purchasing this product should also be fully cooked before consuming or discarded," a statement from the health department said.
"The New York state departments of agriculture and markets and health, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service have collaborated with the NYC health department to identify cases of illness associated with this Salmonella Heidelberg strain, a common bacteria associated with food poisoning in humans."
In stores, broiled chicken livers are often re-packaged and sold in smaller quantities or are used to prepare chopped liver sold at deli-style establishment, NYC health officials said.