Salmonella-Exposed Peanut Butter Recalled From Whole Foods & Trader Joe's, Devastation Ensues

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 03: Jars of Skippy peanut butter are displayed on a shelf at Cal Mart grocery store on January 3, 2013 in San Francisco, California. Hormel, the maker of Spam, announced that it will purchase the Skippy peanut butter brand from Unilever for $700 million in cash. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

You might want to think twice before making yourself a PB&J sandwich today. A recent salmonella scare has Whole Foods and Trader Joe's nut butters disappearing from the shelves. A handful of grocery stores around the world, like Kroger and Safeway, have responded to the salmonella risk with voluntary recalls on certain peanut and almond butter brands.

After discovering the possible contamination risk during a routine test, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a press release with the full list of recalled nut butters. All of the potentially contaminated brands seem to have originated from one food processing company called nSpired Natural Foods Inc., a division of Hain Celestial Group. The food production company has cooperated with the FDA to safely recall the identified nut butter brands and inform their customers about refund opportunities. 

According to the FDA, the affected brands are:

  • Arrowhead Mills Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter
  • Arrowhead Mills Organic Creamy Peanut Butter
  • MaraNatha Roasted Creamy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Roasted Crunchy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Roasted Creamy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Roasted Crunchy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Raw Creamy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Raw Crunchy Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Raw Almond Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Raw Almond Butter 
  • MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter
  • MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter
  • MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 
  • MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt
  • MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 
  • MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Almond Butter 
  • MaraNatha No Stir Crunchy Almond Butter 
  • MaraNatha Organic No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 
  • MaraNatha Organic No Stir Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 
  • MaraNatha Organic No Stir Creamy Almond Butter 
  • MaraNatha Organic No Stir Crunchy Almond Butter 
  • MaraNatha Creamy Maple Almond Butter 
  • Kroger No Stir Creamy Almond Butter
  • Safeway Open Nature Almond Butter
  • Trader Joe's Crunchy Raw Almond Butter
  • Trader Joe's Creamy Raw Almond Butter 
  • Whole Foods 365 Creamy Roasted Almond Butter
  • Whole Foods 365 Crunchy Roasted Almond Butter
  • Whole Foods 365 Organic Creamy Roasted Almond Butter

So far, nSpired Natural Foods Inc. has received reports of four illnesses that could be connected to the nut butter contamination. The FDA has not received information from the company on exactly how many jars of nut butter have been recalled. 

There's good news for Trader Joe’s shoppers, though: the recall only affected Trader Joe’s raw almond butters, so your favorite jar of TJ’s crunchy peanut butter is fair game for lunch.  

So how could salmonella possibly make its way into your peanut butter jar? Salmonella is an organism that can cause serious infections in its victims, causing symptoms ranging from fever and nausea to blood infections and even death. In the past few years we've seen several salmonella outbreaks in the U.S., including another peanut recall in 2009 and the more recent Foster Farms chicken contamination recall this past summer. On average, the U.S. sees around 40,000 cases of salmonella each year, 600 of which are fatal.  

So that’s why your mom always warned you against eating raw cookie dough and brownie batter. Who knew?

You shouldn't let this news turn you off to the wonders of nut butters, though. Studies have shown that peanut butter has a variety of health benefits, from detecting Alzheimer's to preventing breast cancer


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