On January 23 this year, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the recall of a health food product. It was Whole Food’s Carob Energee Nuggets, possibly contaminated with salmonella. These snacks contain bulk peanut butter supplied by the Peanut Corporation of America.
About two weeks ago, General Mills Inc., Safeway, and Kroger Co. (King Sooper stores) pulled a number of peanut butter items from the market because of an outbreak of Salmonella infections. Products withdrawn included cookies, cakes and ice cream containing peanut butter but not jars of peanut butter.
What is Salmonella?
Salmonella is a type of bacteria (single-celled microorganism). There are many species of it. It has no relation to the fish, but is named after an American veterinary pathologist, one Daniel Elmer Salmon. He was the administrator of a U.S. Department of Agriculture research program in which it was discovered.
Salmonella causes various infections including the disease cholera (severe intestinal infection). In the U.S., there are about 40,000 cases of salmonella infection reported every year. In young children and elderly people they can be fatal.
Salmonella symptoms include:
- Diarrhea, perhaps bloody
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain
When the infection spreads into the bloodstream, more severe illness can be caused, such as heart infection, arterial aneurysms and arthritis.
Recall in Four States
Whole Food’s Carob Energee Nuggets have been recalled in California, Nevada, Washington and Oregon. All lots are recalled and the labels contain the number:
So far no Energee Nugget infections have been reported. If you have bought any of these Nuggets you are advised to return them to Whole Foods for a full refund.
Defective products are continually being withdrawn from the market, usually after a significant number of reports are made of injury or illness caused by those products. Defective product lawsuits tend to be complex and time-consuming.