2012 peanut butter recall

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2012 Peanut Butter Recall

The 2012 peanut butter recall was a significant food safety incident in the United States that involved the recall of peanut butter and other nut products due to contamination with Salmonella. The recall was initiated after several cases of Salmonella infection were reported, leading to an investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Background[edit | edit source]

In September 2012, the CDC and FDA began investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections. The outbreak was traced back to peanut butter produced by Sunland Inc., a company based in Portales, New Mexico. The contaminated products were distributed nationwide and sold under various brand names, including those sold at Trader Joe's.

Investigation and Findings[edit | edit source]

The investigation revealed that the contamination originated from the Sunland Inc. processing facility. Inspectors found multiple violations of food safety regulations, including improper cleaning and maintenance of equipment, and the presence of Salmonella in the production environment. As a result, Sunland Inc. voluntarily recalled hundreds of products, including peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, and tahini.

Impact[edit | edit source]

The recall affected numerous retailers and consumers across the United States. Several major grocery chains, including Whole Foods Market and Target, removed the affected products from their shelves. The recall also led to a temporary shutdown of Sunland Inc.'s processing facility and a significant financial impact on the company.

Response[edit | edit source]

In response to the outbreak, the FDA and CDC worked closely with state and local health departments to monitor and control the spread of the infection. Public health advisories were issued to inform consumers about the recall and the potential risks of consuming the contaminated products. The incident highlighted the importance of stringent food safety practices and the need for regular inspections of food processing facilities.

Aftermath[edit | edit source]

Following the recall, Sunland Inc. faced multiple lawsuits from affected consumers and businesses. The company eventually filed for bankruptcy in 2013. The 2012 peanut butter recall served as a wake-up call for the food industry, leading to increased scrutiny and improvements in food safety protocols.

Related Pages[edit | edit source]

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Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD