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Pistachios Sold At Both Wholesale And Retail Levels Recalled; Nationwide Alert Issued By FDA

 Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella, Inc. has been forced into a nationwide recall of specific lots of bulk roasted shelled pistachios and 2,000 lbs., 1,700 lbs., 1,800 lbs. and 1,000 lbs. tote bags of roasted inshell pistachios sold to wholesale customers due to potential contamination with the Salmonella organism.

This is the recall that has led to the news reports warning against eating any pistachios.

Certain bulk roasted inshell and roasted shelled pistachios shipped on or after September 1, 2008 are involved in the recall. The bulk product was distributed throughout the United States. The Company learned that a small amount of roasted shelled pistachios processed by Setton Pistachio and received by a commercial customer in late 2008 recently tested positive for Salmonella.

The Company is asking those firms who received bulk product and have further processed, repackaged, or distributed the affected products to recall those products and contact FDA.

Retail products in the recall include: Setton Farms brand roasted salted shelled pistachios in 9 oz. film bags, UPC Code: 034325020252 with a "Best Before" date between 01/06/10 and 01/19/10. This product was distributed in the following states: SC, GA, FL, NC, VA, TN, KY. Consumers should not consume this product and should return what they may have to the place of purchase for a full refund. Setton has established a toll free number, (888) 228-3717, for consumers to call for further information.

Here’s the press release from Setton Farms that was released by FDA.

Meanwhile, keep reading for what FDA had to say about the larger alert.

FDA Alerts Consumers to Recall of Certain Pistachios

FDA and California Inspectors Identify Salmonella

The FDA and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) are investigating Salmonella contamination in pistachio products sold by Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella Inc, Calif. The company has stopped all distribution of processed pistachios and will issue a voluntary recall involving approximately 1 million pounds of its products. Because the pistachios were used as ingredients in a variety of foods, it is likely this recall will impact many products. In addition, the investigation at the company is ongoing and may lead to additional pistachio product recalls.

The contamination involves multiple strains of Salmonella. Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Thus far, several illnesses have been reported by consumers that may be associated with the pistachios. It is not yet known whether any of the Salmonella strains found in the pistachio products are linked to an outbreak. The FDA is conducting genetic testing of the samples to pursue all links.

FDA is working closely with the pistachio industry and recommends that consumers avoid eating pistachio products until further information is available about the scope of affected products.

FDA will provide a searchable database of affected products at www.fda.gov and will continue to update the public.

FDA first learned of the problem on March 24, when it was informed by Kraft Foods that its Back To Nature Trail Mix was found to be contaminated with Salmonella. Kraft had identified the source of the contamination to be pistachios from Setton and conducted a recall.