Four years after a salmonella outbreak tied to peanut butter, it's happened again -- despite stricter industry standards.
recall of Trader Joe's peanut butter a week ago has been expanded to
more than 100 products sold nationally in many other supermarkets.
least 30 people have been infected with salmonella Bredeney in 19
states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Four were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
No salmonella has been found in the peanut butter, but 12 of the people who got sick reported eating it.
illnesses were traced to Valencia Creamy Salted Peanut Butter produced
by Sunland Inc. of Portales, N.M. Trader Joe's also recalled Valencia
peanut butter made with roasted flaxseeds and almond butter with roasted
So far, the only product directly
linked to the outbreak is Trader Joe's peanut butter, said Sunland vice
president Katalin Coburn.
expanded the recall to include almond butter, peanut butter, cashew
butter, tahini (sesame seed butter) and roasted blanched peanut products
under various names manufactured between May 1 and Sept. 24. The
products were distributed nationally to large supermarket chains under
the Sunland and store brand labels and were sold online.
the products were made on the same production line. Because the source
of the contamination isn't known, "we could not take the risk of
jeopardizing anyone," Coburn said.
with the salmonella bacteria can cause salmonellosis, an illness that
can mean serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail
or elderly people, and those with weakened immune systems.
healthy people it can cause fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and
abdominal pain.It's unknown how or whether the peanuts were
contaminated. If they were, poor manufacturing processes or insufficient
roasting could have been the cause, said Michael Doyle, director of the
Center for Food Safety at the University of Georgia in Griffin.
2008, as many as nine people died and more than 700 people in 46 states
were sickened by peanut butter and other products made by Peanut
Corporation of America. No national brand was involved, but more than
125 products were recalled.
An FDA inspection
of the plants that produced the company's products found them to be
filthy and infested with birds and rodents.Until then, U.S. food safety
experts had not considered peanut butter a high-risk food. They reacted
by establishing a standard for roasting nuts hot enough to kill
dangerous pathogens. An American Peanut Council study suggested that a
range between 264 degrees at 47 minutes to 295 degrees at 14 minutes
would reduce salmonella levels 100,000 times.
Sunland's peanuts are roasted at 330 to 345 degrees for 30 to 33 minutes, Coburn said.