Salmonella, tampering concerns lead to growing number of recalls
Concern about Salmonella contamination linked to products produced at a Minnesota milk co-op is causing a growing number of products from coast-to-coast to be swept off the shelves. The size and scope of the recall is as yet-undetermined since it involves non-fat dry milk, thickening agents and other items sold as ingredients in a wide range of products.
UPDATE: Among the items caught up in the swelling recall are Dunkin' Donuts Dunkaccino and hot chocolate, sauce and gravy mixes made by C.F. Sauer Co. and a host of breakfast and dry milk products.
Among them are Malt-O-Meal maple and brown sugar instant oatmeal sold under more than a dozen brand names. A list of more than two dozen product codes can be found here. And photos of the boxes are here. Supermarket chains, including Meijer, Stop & Shop and Giant, have recalled non-fat dry milk produced with ingredients from the co-op. Another related recall involves NOW Foods whey concentrate. A complete list of the items, along with identifying details is available from the the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
NOTE: The affected boxes of oatmeal will have carton date codes that are between June 30, 2009 and October 28, 2010, which, for example, would be printed as "JUN3009" or "OCT2810," the company says.
No related illnesses have been reported, the FDA said. An FDA spokeswoman indicated recalls would continue as an ongoing investigation determines which companies use the ingredients in their products.
Separately, the FDA is warning consumers to not use Hardcore Energize Bullet or New Whey Liquid Products because of suspected tampering after blades were found in two vials of the drinks. The drinks are manufactured by Protica Inc. in Pennsylvania and sold in the U.S. and Canada. The drinks come in clear, test-tube like vials. The blades, one in a Canadian drink and one in a U.S. drink, appear to be from utility knives.
Plainview Milk Products, which is conducting the dry milk related recall, that none of its products tested positive for Salmonella but the recall was conducted to be "overly cautious." The company said the contamination was discovered in another product, Dairyshake, commercial product that uses Plainview-produced ingredients-- among those from other sources. The FDA said it found evidence of Salmonella contamination on equipment inside the Plainview facilities.
"After the product cleared quality testing and left our facility it was blended with other ingredients and that's when contamination was found, but in situations like this it's in the public's best interest to be overly cautious," Plainview General Manager Dallas Moe said in a statement.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other state and local agencies are working on the investigation with the FDA.
"The FDA is working to track the entire distribution chain of the products,"
an FDA spokeswoman said.