On-going peanut recall carries $1 billion price tag
March 17, 2009
Another day, another handful of peanut products recalled. Add them to the list, which now includes over 3,235 individual recalled products. Yesterday we thought they were ok. What if your little one ate them? Or grandma?
The now-bankrupt Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) inadvertently set off the largest food recall in United States history when it shipped peanut base products to food manufacturers in spite of repeated tests indicating evidence of salmonella colonization. The resulting outbreak of illness began in September 2008 but even now, six months later, the outbreak remains on-going, the peanut recall is still in effect, and industry experts say the price tag for the recall may climb as high as $1 billion before the peanut industry can rebuild.
Thus far, 691 people, ages 1-98, in 46 states have become ill with salmonella infection after eating products made from ingredients distributed by PCA, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There are nine confirmed deaths. Infants, elderly persons, and persons with impaired immune systems are more likely than others to develop severe illness.