source: WikiMedia Commons
The King Nut Food Supply Company of Solon, Ohio, announced a voluntary recall of their peanut butters yesterday after Salmonella food poisoning was traced to a 5-gallon vat of King Nut labeled peanut butter.
The peanut butter recall was announced in concert by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration January 10th, 2009, and thus far has been linked only to peanut butter brands distributed by King Nut food supply.
King Nut is a distributor of peanut butter and other foodservice products to large institutions, such as hospitals, nursing homes, schools, and prisons. The peanut butters were sold to institutions under the labels “King Nut peanut butter” and “Parnell’s Pride Peanut Butter,” respectively, and were not directly available for purchase by consumers.
King Nut reacted promptly by issuing directives to institutional buyers to remove all King Nut-branded peanut butter from circulation. King Nut CEO Martin Kanan indicated that the company had cancelled all orders from the peanut butter manufacturer, the Peanut Corporation of America, after learning of the contamination. Minnesota Public Health officials first made an announcement Friday linking the peanut butter to a nationwide salmonella outbreak after preliminary lab testing pointed to King Nut Brand peanut butter as the source of contagion.
Public health officials in Minnesota were able to make the connection between King Nut peanut butter and the salmonella outbreak after the Minnesota Department of Health linked the same Salmonella strain from the nationwide Salmonella poisoning outbreak to the strain discovered in a large jar of King Nut peanut butter. According to state health officials, this Salmonella strain bearing an identical genetic footprint has been responsible for nearly 400 cases of salmonella poisoning throughout the United States since September of last year.
The latest Salmonella outbreak in peanut butter has come just over a year after a similar peanut butter scandal, in which more than 300 people were sickened after consuming tainted Peter Pan or Great Value peanut butter. Last year's Salmonella outbreak resulted in hundreds of victims being hospitalized after eating the contaminated peanut butter. The outbreak was ultimately tied to a leaky roof in the factory where the peanut butter was produced.