The Food and Drug Administration has just released a report saying they found Salmonella at the Sunland Inc. nut butter production facility in New Mexico. Products from that plant have been linked to a Salmonella Bredeney outbreak that has sickened at least 35 people in 19 states. The government is conducting more analysis to identify the specific strain of Salmonella found.
The recall of Sunland products has been expanded to include all products made in that facility between March 1, 2010 and September 24, 2012. One hundred thirty nine products are being added to the recall, bringing the total number of products recalled to 240. The recall covers all previously identified Peanut Butter, Almond Butter, Cashew Butter, and Tahini products as well as Roasted Blanched Peanut Products. New products added to the recall list include varieties of flavored butters and spreads, including Thai Ginger Butter, Chocolate Butter, and Banana Butter. All products with “Best if Used By” dates of March 1, 2011 or later should be returned or discarded immediately.
The expanded recall list includes 49 products that still have a current shelf life, as well as 90 products that are past their “Best-if-Used-By” date. Consumers may still have those products in their homes. Visit the FDA site to see the complete list of recalled products. The list is very long; look at it carefully to make sure you don’t have any of the products in your home. If you do, discard them or return to the place of purchase for a refund. The company has set up a toll free 24 hour hotline for information on the recall: 1-866-837-1018.
Attorney Fred Pritzker has called on Sunland to pay outbreak patients’ bills. He said, “we’ve had a collapse in food safety controls and people sickened in this outbreak deserve to have their medical bills paid promptly.”
The symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps that occur 12 to 72 hours after exposure. The illness usually lasts four to seven days. Children are most likely to get salmonellosis. This current outbreak, linked to Trader Joe’s Valencia Peanut Butter, has now sickened 35 people in 19 states and the median patient age is 7 years. If you have eaten any nut products and experienced these symptoms, see your doctor immediately.