This week, the superstore chain Kroger Co. recalled four potentially contaminated seasonings. The FDA tested spices at a North Augusta, South Carolina location and found traces of salmonella, according to a statement posted to its website on Sunday. Kroger has had to issue a full recall of Kroger Ground Cinnamon, Kroger Garlic Powder, Kroger Coarse Ground Black Pepper, and Kroger Bac'n Buds. Though you might not have known that seasonings can in fact be contaminated with salmonella, the affected products can be dangerous, so it's important to be aware of whether you've purchased them.
Kroger operates in 34 states, so if you live outside the corporation's reach, you probably don't have anything to worry about. Kroger Co. also owns convenience stores, so you might have had access to the products if you shopped at stores such as Ralphs, Food 4 Less, Foods Co., Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, City Market, Smith's, Dillons, Baker's, Gerbes, Jay C, Ruler Foods, Pay Less, Owen's, or Scott's.
The FDA only found traces of the bacteria in the garlic powder, but called for a total recall of all four products made with the same equipment, to be safe. If you have one of the questionable spices in your kitchen already, the FDA has released the Universal Product Codes (also known as the bar codes) for the recalled spices. They are:
- Kroger Ground Cinnamon: 1111070034 Sell by: May 19 18PS4
- Kroger Garlic Powder: 1111070039 Sell by: May 18 17PS4
- Kroger Coarse Ground Black Pepper: 1111070041 Sell by: May 18 or May 19 18PS4
- Kroger Bac'n Buds: 1111070025 Sell by: May 20 18PS4
Salmonella is the most common kind of food poisoning in the United States. No illnesses have been reported to the FDA so far in regard to this recall. People who have consumed affected food will likely experience diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps, and vomiting for four to seven days after ingesting the bacteria, according to FoodSafety.gov.
Cooking food kills salmonella, but you still shouldn't eat the seasonings, even if you plan to cook them. You can return purchased products to the store for a full refund, and can call Kroger at 800-576-4377 with any questions.
Salmonella poisoning usually brings to mind unsafe chicken or eggs, but household spices can be harmful as well. According to NPR, about seven percent of spices tested by FDA researchers between 2006 and 2009 were contaminated. Spices can become infected when the plants are picked, dried, processed, stored, or when animals get access to them.
To avoid salmonella in general, FoodSafety.gov advises that you keep your hands and surfaces clean when preparing food, avoid eating raw meat and eggs, and keep foods properly refrigerated.
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