Black Pepper Recalled Over Salmonella Fears

Heartland Foods, Inc. of Indianapolis is voluntarily recalling all sizes and containers of COARSE GROUND BLACK PEPPER shipped from their facility at 6815 E. 34th Street, Indianapolis Indiana, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) just announced.

Potential distribution took place on or after October 19th, 2009 to February 17th, 2010. These products, said the FDA, have the potential to be contaminated with <"">Salmonella.

The product involved includes the following sizes: “1 lb Quart (jar), 4 lb Gallon, 8 lb Bucket (new pail).” Each container is identified with an individual label showing the Heartland Foods company logo and the description “Coarse Ground Black Pepper” and the specific “Net Weight of the container (i.e., 1 lb, 4 lb, 8 lb).” Product distribution of Coarse Ground Black Pepper has been suspended while the FDA continues its investigation.

Customers who have purchased Coarse Ground Black Pepper during the specified dates are urged not to use the product and to return the product to a Heartland Foods, Inc. representative for a full refund. Customers are also urged to recall any product they further distributed. Heartland Foods, Inc.’s Recall Department can be reached Monday through Friday 5:00 am to 5:00 pm Eastern Standard Time toll-free at 1-800-762-6909.

Salmonella, which is usually found in food and water contaminated with animal feces, is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstance, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis, and arthritis. Salmonella poisoning can lead to Reiter’s Syndrome, a difficult-to-treat reactive arthritis characterized by severe joint pain, irritation of the eyes, and painful urination.

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