A food recall has many Maritimers checking their store bought bagged salads very carefully.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Sobeys has recalled certain Compliments and Sensations brand salads and in-store prepared foods.

The smaller size retail packages have best before dates from May 12 to May 29, 2012.

The CFIA says the items may be contaminated with the listeria bacteria.

The warning was issued by the American manufacturer on Friday before the long weekend.

"Friday was the day they issued the recall and expanded it on Saturday and Sunday so it was simply a matter of timing as far as we are concerned. It was a recall issued by a foreign manufacturer," CFIA Recall Specialist Shashi Kulkarni tells CTV News from Ottawa.

The recall was voluntary and there haven't been any reported cases of illness after eating the bagged salads.

Those most at risk include the elderly, people with compromised immune systems and expectant moms.

"What happens is people might get a persistent high fever and headache," says Kulkarni. "When it gets into the nervous system there are symptoms that may cause people to be off balance and have a stiff neck."

The warning has since been expanded and now includes certain products from River Ranch Fresh Foods of California.

The recall has shoppers being extra cautious.

"I think I am a little hesitant with those anyway. I think in the past we've seen some of the recalls on that sort of thing. I am more likely to buy the lettuce and the toppings separately," says shopper Kim Cahill.

"There are always problems that will crop up so we always have to be watching," says Paul Isnor. "At least they catch it and then they can do something about it."

Food contaminated with listeria may not look or smell spoiled, but if the bacteria is eaten it can cause illness.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Kelland Sundahl