Sunland Inc. has extended its recall of peanut products because of Salmonella contamination to include raw and roasted shelled and in-shell peanuts processed at its plant in Portales, New Mexico.
The extended recall is the result of an ongoing investigation by Sunland and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Sunland has stopped producing and distributing all products from both its peanut butter and peanut processing plants while the investigation continues.
The raw and roasted peanuts included in this recall are within their current shelf life or have no stated expiration date. For a list of the more than 70 peanut products added to the existing list of originally recalled products, see the FDA announcement of the expanded recall.
Sunland's original September 24 recall included peanut butter and other nut butter products produced in a separate building from where raw and roasted peanuts are processed. At that time, 29 people in 18 states reported illnesses linked to Salmonella, and 12 of 14 reported having eaten the same Sunland product. As of October 5, the total number of confirmed illnesses reported was 35.
This latest round of recalls of peanut products underscores the need for the Food Safety Modernization Act. That safety bill has been stalled by the U.S. government for the past nine months. The Act was actually passed in January 2011, in response to illnesses tied to tainted spinach in 2006 and recalled peanut butter in 2009, but has been stalled since then.
Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weak immune systems. Healthy people infected with Salmonella can experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses.
For kid lunch options that don't rely on peanut butter or other peanut products, read our "guide to healthy school lunches that your kids will love." And for more information about how to get involved with food safety, check out NotInMyFood.org.
For more information about this recall call Sunland at 1-866-837-1018.