By: James Peacock
Each week, we look at some of the recalls that have been issued as a result of foodborne illness contamination. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the United States Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), and the state health departments work together to notify consumers of potential contaminations. In this past week, recalls were issued for a variety of products, including: protein bars, cashew butter, almond butter, macadamia nuts, beef products, and granola products. It is important for consumers to keep track of recalls as they occur, as recalled products can sometimes have long shelf lives, increasing the risk of infection.
On June 14, 2017, GoMacro issued a recall for both MacroBars and Thrive Bars. The bars have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. A couple of different varieties and lots are subject to the recall. The recall was issued because GoMacro was notified by its supplier that the almonds used in the bars might be contaminated. Recalled bars were distributed both domestically and internationally through retailers, mail orders, and deliveries. Despite the recall, no contamination in any tested bars has been discovered, and there have been no reports of illness connected to this recall. The varieties of bars, as well as all identifying information, can be found in the table below. The UPC code, lot number, and “best by” dates can all be found on the side panel of the recalled products.
|Product Name||Size||“Best By” Dates||UPC code||Lot codes|
|Coconut + Almond Butter + Chocolate Chips MacroBars||2.3 ounces||1/3/2018||853555006689||3516|
|Coconut + Almond Butter + Chocolate Chips Mini Macrobar||0.9 ounces||1/16/2018||85355006719||3537|
|Chocolate, Nuts & Sea Salt Thrive Bar||1.4 ounces||2/6/2018||853555006504||3569|
|Caramel Coconut Thrive Bar||1.4 ounces||2/6/2018||853555006528||3568|
In an expansion of a recall that we talked about a few weeks ago, Kroger issued another recall for Simple Truth Dry Roasted Macadamia Nuts. This recall was caused by a contaminated piece of equipment used in the manufacturing process. Recalled macadamia nuts are packaged in 12-ounce clear plastic packages. Distributed products were sent to retail stores between 12/9/2016 and 06/13/2017. The macadamia nuts are marked with the UPC code 11110-02478. The “Sell By” dates of Dec. 09 2017, Mar. 02 2018, Mar. 03 2018, and Apr. 07 2018 are included in the recall. These products were sent to Kroger, Ralphs, QFC, Food 4 Less, Foods Co., Fred Meyer, Owen’s, Fry’s, King Soopers, City Market, Smith’s, Metro Market, Dillons, Baker’s, Gerbes, Jay C, Ruler Foods, Pay Less, Pick N’ Save, and Copps locations nationwide. No cases of Listeria poisoning have been reported in relation to this recall.
On June 15, 2017, a recall was issued for protein bar and bite products after concerns arose that they may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. Bulletproof 360, a Bellevue, Washington company, issued the recall for five of their products. These products were distributed domestically to a variety of retail stores, but internationally through the company’s website. Affected products were shipped to Australia, Bahrain, Bermuda, Bolivia, the Virgin Islands (USA), Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cayman Islands, China, Finland, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, France, Germany, Guam, Hong Kong, Hungary, Taiwan, Iceland, Israel, Japan, Korea, Switzerland, Kuwait, Liechtenstein, Spain, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Macau, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Philippines, Puerto Rico, and Romania. The recall occurred because Bulletproof 360 received word that the cashew butter used in the products may be the source of the contamination. No additional products, except the ones listed in the table below, are affected by the recall. No illnesses have been reported in relation to this recall.
|Product Name||Packaged||Individual Weight||Box Weight||Individual UPC Code||Box UPC Code||Use by Dates||Lot Numbers|
|Fudge Brownie Collagen Protein Bar||Individually packaged, 12 per box||1.58 ounces||18.96 ounces||815709021498||815709020811||11/1/2017||0957|
|Fudge Brownie Collagen Protein Bite||Individually Packaged, 15 per box||0.74 ounces||11.10 ounces||815709021528||815709021535||12/27/17||1227|
|Lemon Cookie Collagen Protein Bar||Individually Packaged, 12 per box||1.58 ounces||18.96 ounces||815709021801||815709021795||11/7/2017||1017|
|Vanilla Shortbread Collagen Protein Bar||Individually Packaged, 12 per box||1.58 ounces||18.96 ounces||815709021481||815709020804||11/15/2017||1097|
|Vanilla Shortbread Collagen Protein Bite||Individually packaged, 15 per box||0.74 ounces||11.10 ounces||815709021504||815709021511||11/20/2017||1147|
The next day, June 16, brought another recall caused by Listeria contamination, this time for almond and cashew butter. NOW Health Group, Inc. expanded their recall that previously affected other varieties of nut butter. Two new Ellyndale brand products have been added to the recall: Nutty Infusions Roasted Almond Butter and Nutty Infusions Mango Chili Cashew Butter. The Roasted Almond Butter was packaged in 10-ounce plastic jars and marked with the item number E0545. Recalled jars can be identified by the lot number 2124119 and the “Best By” Date 2/18. The Mango Chili Cashew Butter was also sold in 10-ounce plastic jars. The item number for this product is E0542. Items affected by the recall were also marked with the lot number 2125156 and the “Best By” Date of 3/19. No other Ellyndale products are included in the recall, and there have not been any reports of illness in connection with this recall.
OFD Foods, LLC issued a recall on June 13 for nearly 200 pounds of beef products after it was discovered that they might be contaminated with extraneous rubber items. The beef hash products were produced on December 22, 2016. These products were sold not only to retail locations nationwide but also to consumers directly through the Internet. The Mountain House Freeze Dried Spicy Southwest Breakfast hash was packaged in 3.88-ounce pouches. The pouches affected by the recall are marked with the pouch code 3253174 and the “Best By” date of Dec. 2046. The potential contamination was discovered by an employee on June 12, who subsequently notified OFD Foods. There have not been any adverse reactions due to this product. Because this product has an extremely long shelf life, it is important that consumers who may have purchased the affected beef products check to make sure that their product is not included in the recall.
Listeria monocytogenes in Granola Products
Listeria contamination caused quite a few recalls in the past week, including both the ones listed above as well as in a couple of granola products. Wildway, LLC issued a voluntary recall on June 14 for grain-free granola. A supplier had notified Wildway prior to the recall that one of the ingredients in the granola products also had the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. All products involved in the recall are listed below in the table. Recalled products can be identified by the UPC code, Lot code, and “Best by” Date. Item descriptions can be found on the center of the top label. Lot codes can be found at the bottom of the bags. The identifying information is also listed in the table below. No illnesses caused by the granola products have been reported.
|Product Name||Size||UPC/SKU code||Lot codes||“Best By” Date||States Affected|
|Wildway Apple Cinnamon Grain-free Granola||8 ounces||85866005190||096||040618||Nationwide|
|Wildway Apple Cinnamon Grain-free Granola||10 ounces||864352000015||097||040718||Nationwide|
|Wildway Banana Nut Grain-free Granola||8 ounces||858660005176||089||033018||Nationwide|
|Wildway Coconut Cashew Grain-free Granola||8 ounces||858660005183||090||103117||Nationwide|
|Wildway Coconut Cashew Grain-free Granola||10 ounces||858660005183||090||103117||Nationwide|
|Wildway Vanilla Bean Espresso Grain-free Granola||8 ounces||858660005206||089||033018||Nationwide|
|Trader Joe’s Grainless Granola||8 ounces||56307||087||032818||AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, D.C., NM, LA, MA, MD, ME, NH, DE, NJ, NV, NY, OK, PA, RI, TX, UT, VA and VT|
One day later, on June 15, 2017, New England Natural Bakers issued a voluntary recall for several different products. The Greenfield, Massachusetts-based company was notified by their supplier that one of their ingredients was potentially contaminated with Listeria bacteria. At this time, there have not been any illnesses reported in relation to the recall. The products affected by the recall, as well as any other identifying information, are listed in the table below.
|Product Name||Size(s)||UPC code||“Best By” Date||States Affected|
|Organic Muesli||5 pound cases||00046689225013||021018||CA, PA, CT, GA, MA, NH, NJ, and NY|
|25 pounds cases|
|Organic Muesli||5 pound cases||00046689225013||022818||CA, PA, CT, GA, MA, NH, NJ, and NY|
|25 pound cases|
|Evoke Organic Classic Swiss||12 ounce pouches||853305003081||052418||Nationwide|
|Evoke Organic Athlete Fuel||12 ounces pouches||853305003029||052418||Nationwide|
|Millville Fruit & Nut Whole Grain Granola||16 ounce cartons||041498205232||051018||CT, WV, DE, MA, MD, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, VA, and VT|
The CDC estimates that Listeria monocytogenes causes about 1600 illnesses per year, making it one of the less common forms of food poisoning, although it remains one of the most dangerous foodborne pathogens. Listeria poisoning can manifest itself in one of two forms. In those with relatively healthy immune systems, Listeria presents itself as a gastrointestinal illness, causing symptoms such as fever, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. In some cases though, and especially in the elderly and immunocompromised, Listeria can turn invasive, causing headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions. Invasive Listeria is potentially fatal, as it can enter the nervous system and cause meningitis. Pregnant women are also at an increased risk of developing a serious case of Listeria poisoning. Listeria may cause a flu-like infection in pregnant women, but can cause miscarriages and stillbirths. These symptoms can appear anywhere between 3 and 70 days after the Listeria bacteria is ingested. If you or a loved one begins to show the symptoms of Listeria poisoning, contact a medical professional.