Cargill has recalled about 36 million pounds of fresh and frozen ground turkey products after an investigation found that turkeys from its Springdale, Arkansas plant may have been infected with Salmonella Heidelberg.

Collaborative investigative efforts of state, local, and federal public health and regulatory agencies indicate that eating ground turkey is the likely source of the recent Salmonella outbreak. Among the 51 ill persons with available information, 25 reported consuming ground turkey.

A total of 77 persons and one death have been linked with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Heidelberg in 26 states between March 1 and August 1, 2011, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Cargill has recalled fresh and frozen ground turkey products produced at its Springdale facility from Feb. 20, 2011, through Aug. 2, 2011.

All of the packages recalled include the code "Est. P-963," according to Cargill.

Cargill has suspended production of ground turkey products at the Arkansas plant until it finds the source of the contamination.

However, Cargill noted that products from its remaining three turkey processing facilities in the U.S. were not involved in the recall.

"While facts continue to be gathered, and currently there is no conclusive answer regarding the source of Salmonella Heidelberg contamination, given our concern for what has happened, and our desire to do what is right for our consumers and customers, we are voluntarily removing our ground turkey products from the marketplace," said Steve Willardsen, president of Cargill's turkey processing business.

"It is regrettable that people may have become ill from eating one of our ground turkey products and, for anyone who did, we are truly sorry," Willardsen added.

In October 2007, Cargill had recalled approximately 845,000 pounds of frozen ground beef patties produced at its Butler, Wisconsin location as they were linked to the E. coli outbreak.

In fiscal year 2010, Cargill reported net earnings of $2.6 billion on sales and other revenues of $107.9 billion.

Following ground turkey products are involved in the recall:

Ground Turkey Chubs - Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11

 10 lbs. Chubs of Honeysuckle White Fresh Natural Lean Ground Turkey with Natural Flavorings

 10 lbs. Chubs of Unbranded Ground Turkey w/ Natural Flavoring 2 Pack

 80 oz. (5 lbs.) chubs of Riverside Ground Turkey with Natural Flavoring

10 lb. Chub of Natural Lean Ground Turkey with Natural Flavorings

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Fresh Lean HEB Ground Turkey 93/7

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Fresh HEB Ground Turkey 85/15

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Honeysuckle White 93/7 Fresh Ground Turkey with Natural Flavoring

4-1 Pound Packages of Honeysuckle White Ground Turkey with Natural Flavoring Value Pack

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Fresh Ground Turkey

48 oz. (3 lb.) chubs of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Fresh Ground Turkey

85 percent Ground Turkey - Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11

19.2 oz. (1.2 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Ground Turkey

19.2 oz. (1.2 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White Taco Seasoned Ground Turkey Colored with Paprika

19.2 oz. (1 lb. 3.2 oz.) trays of Kroger Ground Turkey Fresh 85/15

48.0 oz. (3 lb.) trays of Kroger Ground Turkey Fresh 85/15

20 oz. (1.25 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Ground Turkey

48.0 oz. (3 lbs.) trays of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Ground Turkey Family Pack

16 oz. (1 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Ground Turkey

19.2 oz. (1.2 lbs.) trays of Honeysuckle White Seasoned Italian Style Ground Turkey with Natural Flavorings

20 oz. (1 lb. 4 oz.) trays of Safeway Fresh Ground Turkey with Natural Flavorings  15% Fat

93 percent Ground Turkey - Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11

19.2 oz. (1.20 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White 93/7 Lean Ground Turkey

48 oz. (3.0 lbs.) trays of Honeysuckle White 93/7 Lean Ground Turkey Family

19.2 oz. (1.2 lb.) trays of Fit & Active Lean Ground Turkey 93/07

19.2 oz. (1.2 lbs.) trays of Giant Eagle Ground Turkey Fresh & Premium Lean

19.2 oz. (1 lb 3.2 oz.) trays of Kroger Ground Turkey Fresh Lean 93/7

20 oz. (1.25 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White 93/7 Lean Ground Turkey

Ground Patties - Use or Freeze by Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/23/11

16.0 oz. (1 lb.) trays of Honeysuckle White Ground Turkey Patties

16 oz. (1 lb.) trays of Kroger Ground Seasoned Turkey Patties Fresh 85/15

NOTE: ONLY THE FOLLOWING USE OR FREEZE BY DATES ARE AFFECTED: 07/09/11, 07/10/11, 07/11/11, 07/15/11, 07/16/11, 07/21/11, 07/22/11, 07/24/11, 08/01/11 AND 08/04/11

Frozen Ground Turkey - Production Dates of 2/20/11 through 8/2/11

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Honeysuckle White Ground Turkey with Natural Flavoring

16 oz. (1 lb.) chubs of Spartan Ground Turkey

48 oz. (3 lb.) chubs of Honeysuckle White 85/15 Ground Turkey

40 lb. Bulk Packed Ground Turkey with Natural Flavoring For Food Service Use Only

Salmonellosis is an infection with bacteria called Salmonella. Salmonella germs have been known to cause illness for over 100 years. They were discovered by an American scientist named Salmon, for whom they are named.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) have issued public alert that ground turkey and ground turkey dishes should always be cooked to 165 °F internal temperature.

Most persons infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most persons recover without treatment. Additional symptoms may be chills, headache, nausea and vomiting that can last up to seven days. However, in some persons, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized, according to CDC.

Older adults, infants and people with impaired immune systems are more likely to have a severe salmonella illness.