Archive for January 19, 2009

Another Nutty Recall

Just when we thought it might be safe to pick up some of those convenient potentially toxic processed foods from the grocery store — another massive food recall slaps us back to our senses.  Today MSNBC reported that:

The company that sells Little Debbie snacks announced a recall Sunday of peanut butter crackers because of a potential link to a deadly salmonella outbreak.

The voluntary recall came one day after the government advised consumers to avoid eating cookies, cakes, ice cream and other foods with peanut butter until health officials learn more about the contamination.

Little Debbie, Little Debbie!  It’s not bad enough your snacks are just empty vegan calories sold in non-recyclable waxed cardboard containers – now we hear that they’re unhygenic too.   The tainted foods were made with peanut products produced at a Blakely, Georgia facility owned by the Peanut Corporation of America.  MSNBC reports:

The Scene of the Crime

The Scene of the Crime

Most peanut butter sold in jars at supermarkets appears to be safe, said Stephen Sundlof, head of the Food and Drug Administration’s food safety center.

“We urge consumers to postpone eating any products that may contain peanut butter until additional information becomes available,” Sundlof told reporters in a conference call. “As of now, there is no indication that the major national name-brand jars of peanut butter sold in retails stores are linked to the recall.”

“This is an excellent illustration of an ingredient-driven outbreak,” said Dr. Robert Tauxe, who oversees foodborne illness investigations for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Like other food-borne problems we’ve seen in the last few years, this one may be more widespread than early reports indicate.  According to The Examiner; “potentially contaminated product is showing up in states where it is, supposedly, not distributed.”  The FDA has published an FAQ page on the outbreak in which they state:

FDA and CDC are working to identify foods that contain the peanut butter under investigation. Both agencies will keep the public informed of their progress.

Given their track record on such things, it might be prudent to avoid all peanut butter products for a while.  That includes pet foods, as many dog treats are made with peanut butter.  But because his digestive system operates quite differently than yours; unless your dog is very old, very young or has a compromised immune system; salmonella contamination in dog treats probably presents a greater risk to your health than his.

January 19, 2009 at 12:33 am 1 comment


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