Salmonella Recalls Top 100, Peanut Corp. of America Only Source of Outbreak

A multi-state <"">salmonella outbreak linked to tainted peanut butter has resulted in 125 different food recalls. Peanut butter and peanut paste made by Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) have  been confirmed as the sole source of the salmonella outbreak, which has so far sickened 486 people in 43 states.

Earlier this month, the outbreak strain of Salmonella Typhimurium was found in an opened 5 pound container of PCA’s King Nut Peanut Butter in Minnesota.  Now, the same strain has been found in an unopened container of PCA peanut butter in Connecticut.  A different strain of salmonella has also been found on the floor of PCA’s Blakely, Georgia plant. 

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is still conducting tests at that facility, and has said that products containing peanut butter or paste made there after July 1 should be recalled.  PCA has  stopped production at the Blakely plant while the FDA investigates.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 14 institutions where people became sick had bought peanut butter made by PCA.  Others sickened in the nationwide outbreak reported eating either Keebler or Austin  peanut butter crackers made by the Kellogg Company, which are made with PCA peanut butter.

Kellogg has already recalled peanut butter crackers and cookies that may have been made with PCA peanut butter or peanut paste.  But PCA makes these ingredients for 85 firms, and in the past several days, salmonella worries have prompted an avalanche of recalls.  PCA also makes peanut butter that is distributed in bulk to nursing homes, schools and other institutions.

The FDA has set up a searchable database on its website where consumers can keep track of the ever-growing list of salmonella recalls.  The agency is also warning consumers to avoid eating any foods with peanut butter until the salmonella investigation is complete.  However, the agency also said that peanut butters sold in retail stores are safe.

Companies that recently added foods to the FDA’s recall list include:

  • Ready Pac Foods, Inc.:   Ready Pac Cool Cuts Celery with Peanut Butter; Trader Joe’s Celery with Peanut Butter; Eating Right Apples with Peanut Butter; Eating Right Celery with Peanut Butter. These products have been distributed to different retailers in the states of California, Utah, Illinois, Washington, Texas, New Jersey, Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Maryland.
  • NutriSystem Inc: Various lot codes of NutriSystem-branded Peanut Butter Granola Bars 1.41 ounces or 40 grams.  The peanut butter granola bar has been distributed directly to customers from the website or call center sales, and is not available in retail sales.
  • Premier Nutrition:  Select TWISTED and TITAN branded nutrition bars that contain peanut butter.  This recall includes Vanilla, Chocolate and Peanut Butter varieties of the TWISTED bar, as well as TWISTED bar variety packs in 15 and 24 count.  Also TITAN bars, Chocolate Peanut Crunch variety.
  • Boca Grande Foods Inc. of Duluth, Ga., is recalling POCO PAC and GRANDE GOURMET peanut butter and peanut butter and jelly combination products. The products were distributed in 0.5 oz., 0.75 oz., 1 oz., 1.12 oz., 2 oz., 2.25 oz. and 3 oz. individual plastic containers labeled with POCO PAC or GRANDE GOURMET, as well as unbranded 16 oz., 5 lb. and 50 lb. bulk plastic containers.
  • Dinners Ready of Meridian, ID is recalling the Asian Marinated Flank Steak with Sesame Vegetable Stir Fry, Indonesian Chicken with Coconut Rice, and Chicken Satay & Bangkok Peanut Sauce with Jasmine Rice meals prepared from their November & December menus.  The marinades used for the protein portions of the meals were made using peanut butter.  The recall applies only to the protein portion that comes as part of the packaged dinners and not to the side dish or Bangkok Peanut sauce accompanying the meals.
  • Blanton’s Candies of Sweetwater, TN:  Approximately 1,400 pounds of Blanton’s Peanut Butter Sticks packaged in 8 ounce cellophane bags.  The Peanut Butter Sticks were distributed in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida through retail stores.
  • Weis Markets:  Two private label peanut butter sandwich crackers it sells under its Weis Quality label: Weis Quality (WQ) Cheese Peanut Butter Sandwich Crackers, 11-ounce (UPC 41497-56442) and Weis Quality Toasted Peanut Butter Sandwich Crackers 11-ounce (UPC 41497-56443).  The product was distributed at Weis Markets retail stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and West Virginia.
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