The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is alerting consumers to avoid consuming smoked pork and beef pepper sticks produced by Belgrade Meat Center, Belgrade, Minn., after routine product sampling discovered the products to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria.

There are no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of these products.

The pepper sticks included in the advisory bear the lot number 318130 located on the back of the package, and Minnesota State Establishment Number 1157. Belgrade Meat Center sold approximately 20 pounds of the pork and beef pepper sticks at its retail store in Belgrade. The company is cooperating with MDA’s investigation. Consumers are asked to return packages to the retail store.

In addition, approximately 280 pounds of product was distributed under the Pastures A Plenty label. These products include:

Uncured smoked breakfast links lot number 311130 distributed to Linden Hills Coop in Minneapolis, and Whole Foods in Duluth. The products are also served at Bryant Lake Bowl, Café Barbette and Gigi Café all located in Minneapolis.

Uncured pork wieners lot number 311130 was distributed through Seward Coop in Minneapolis, Mississippi Market at both the Selby Avenue and West 7th locations in St. Paul, and at the River Market in Stillwater.

Uncured pork wieners and uncured smoked bratwurst both with lot number 318130 served at Natedog Mobile Food Cart in the Twin Cities metro.

According to MDA Dairy and Food Inspection Division Director Heidi Kassenborg, the contamination was first detected in a product sample collected during a routine inspection. MDA investigators are now working to determine the source of the contamination.

Consumption of food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes can cause listeriosis, an uncommon but potentially serious disease marked by fever, severe headache, neck stiffness and nausea. Healthy people rarely contract listeriosis, but it can sometimes cause fatal infections in infants, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems. Listeriosis can also lead to miscarriages and stillbirths in pregnant women.