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Hundreds of rodents found inside Family Dollar facility

WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. (AP) – More than 1,000 rodents have been found at a Family Dollar distribution center in Arkansas, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Friday as the chain issued a voluntary recall affecting items purchased in hundreds of stores in the South.

A consumer complaint prompted officials to inspect the West Memphis, Arkansas facility in January, the FDA said in a press release. Inside the building, inspectors said they found live rodents, dead rodents in “various states of decomposition”, rodent droppings, dead birds and bird droppings.

After fumigating the facility, more than 1,100 dead rodents were recovered, officials said.

“No one should be subjected to products stored in the kind of unacceptable conditions we found at this Family Dollar distribution facility,” Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs Judith McMeekin said.

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The FDA said it was working with Family Dollar to initiate a voluntary recall of the affected products.

These products include human food, pet food, dietary supplements, cosmetics, medical devices and over-the-counter drugs purchased in January or February from Family Dollar stores in Alabama, Arkansas , Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri or Tennessee.

In a press release, Family Dollar listed the 404 stores that may have sold products from the contaminated facility.

The company said it “is not aware of any consumer complaints or illness reports related to this recall.”

The FDA said foods in non-permeable packages “may be suitable for use if thoroughly cleaned.” Regardless of packaging, all drugs, medical devices, cosmetics and dietary supplements should be discarded, officials said.

“Family Dollar is notifying its affected stores by letter asking them to check their inventory immediately and to quarantine and discontinue sale of any affected product,” the company said. “Customers who may have purchased the affected product can return this product to the Family Dollar store where it was purchased without a receipt.”

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