Peanut Butter Recall Hits Schools After Salmonella Outbreak

 
on October 16 2012 4:04 PM

Peanut butter that has been recalled due to salmonella contamination has found its way into schools via Smucker’s Uncrustable peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, reports Food Poisoning Bulletin.

Some of the premade, crustless sandwiches from Smuckers are produced with Sunland Inc. peanut butter, which has had more than 240 products recalled, according to the food poisoning prevention site. The recalls were issued in late September, but sandwiches continue to be served by the National School Lunch Program.

Food Poison Bulletin reports that the J.M. Smucker Co. initiated a voluntary recall on their products last week, prompting the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the NSLP, to take action. A “food safety hold” was issued last week.

Word came earlier this week that the recall that began last month has been expanded to include all raw and roasted in-shell and shelled peanuts from Sunland.

“Dear Customers,” reads a statement from Sunland President and CEO Jimmie Shearer, from Oct. 12.. “Sunland, Inc. announces voluntary extension of ongoing recall to include raw and roasted shelled and in-shell peanuts due to possible health risk.”

Since the recall was announced, the Food and Drug Administration released a list of brands and products to avoid due to possible salmonella contamination. Brand names like Starbucks, Trader Joe’s and America’s Choice, among others were listed on the FDA recall chart.

The Sunland Peanut Processing Plant in Portales, N.M., is where all of the nuts involved in the recall were processed. The salmonella outbreak has affected 35 people across 19 states from just the Trader Joe’s brand Valencia Creamy Salted Peanut Butter made with Sea Salt alone, report the Center for Disease Control.

“At Sunland, nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our customers,” says the original press release from Shearer on Sept. 24. “While federal and state agencies investigate to confirm the cause of illnesses reported, as a precautionary step, we have decided to voluntarily recall our almond butter, peanut butter and cashew butters, tahini and roasted blanched products with BEST BY DATES between May 1, 2013 and September 24, 2013.”

The statement goes on to urge costumers not to eat products listed as dangerous, and to return or throw out the possibly contaminated products.

Smucker’s also released a statement, which was obtained by Food Poisoning Bulletin. The company wrote that the products that have been recalled are “specific lots of institutional 72-count bulk packs of Uncrustables Sandwiches produced for, and distributed exclusively through, food service sales channels.”

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