Unsafe Food Products and Product Liability Cases

When we purchase food from a grocery store or dine out at a restaurant, we trust that the products offered to us are safe for consumption. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. 

Every year, countless individuals suffer from illnesses due to unsafe food products, which can lead to significant health problems and, in severe cases, death. At Cooper Schall & Levy, an accomplished personal injury law practice in Philadelphia, we are committed to advocating for the rights of those affected by unsafe food products. 

What Is Product Liability?

Product liability refers to the legal obligation of manufacturers, distributors, and retailers to ensure that the products they sell are safe for consumer use. When it comes to food, this means that all parties involved in the food supply chain must take steps to prevent contamination and ensure that food is safe to eat. 

If you have been harmed by an unsafe food product, you may have the right to file a product liability lawsuit. Such a case may be legally based on negligence, breach of warranty, or strict liability. Get in touch with our offices to find out if you have a viable claim.

The Difference Between Food Poisoning and Food Contamination

It’s important to understand the distinction between food poisoning and food contamination:

Food poisoning occurs when someone becomes ill after consuming food that contains harmful bacteria, viruses, or toxins. 

Food contamination, on the other hand, refers to the presence of harmful substances in food, which can occur at any stage of the production, processing, or cooking process. While all cases of food poisoning result from some form of contamination, not all contaminated foods will necessarily cause food poisoning, depending on the type and amount of contaminant. 

Foods That Commonly Cause Food Poisoning

Certain foods are more likely to cause food poisoning, typically due to the way they are produced, stored, and handled. High-risk foods include:

  • Poultry and meat, due to the risk of salmonella and E. coli
  • Eggs, especially when raw or undercooked
  • Seafood, including fish and shellfish, which can be contaminated with toxins and bacteria
  • Dairy products, if not pasteurized or stored properly
  • Fresh produce which can be contaminated with harmful bacteria from soil, water, human or animal waste

Although the above-mentioned products are fresh, pre-packaged goods, such as canned goods and baby food, can be contaminated by form bodies or particulates during the production process and also cause serious harm.

Pathogens Commonly Responsible for Food Poisoning

Three types of pathogens may be culprits in food poisoning incidents: bacterial, parasitic, and viral. The following pathogens are commonly associated with foodborne illnesses: 

  • Salmonella may be found in raw poultry, eggs, and dairy products
  • C. botulinum is often found in produce and seafood
  • E. coli is present in undercooked ground beef and contaminated produce
  • Listeria may be present in deli meats, hot dogs, and soft cheeses
  • Norovirus can be spread through contact with infected individuals as well as by ingesting contaminated food or water

How Our Attorneys Will Fight for Your Right to Just Compensation

At Cooper Schall & Levy, we understand the terrible physical, emotional, and financial toll unsafe food products can take on individuals and their families. Our experienced attorneys are dedicated to holding responsible parties accountable and securing the compensation you deserve. We will assist you in your fight for maximum compensation by:

  • Evaluating your case at no charge
  • Performing a thorough investigation to identify the source of your illness
  • Consulting with food safety and infectious disease experts who may testify on your behalf
  • Providing excellent legal representation during negotiations and at trial 

Contact Our Skilled Product Liability Lawyers Now

If you or a loved one has been affected by an unsafe food product, you need the sharp attorneys of Cooper Schall & Levy to fight for you. We’ll stand by your side every step of the way to give you the best possible chance of receiving the compensation and closure you deserve.