How fast is the list of peanut butter products growing? Today a top Food & Drug Administration (FDA) official was sent up the United States Senate to tell its Agriculture Committee that 1,000 products in 16 categories have been "voluntarily recalled" by 75 companies that choose poorly when buying peanut butter and/or paste from the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA).
But before the FDA brass hat could even get back to the office, THE BIG LIST had grown to include 1,554 products. If your are signed up for FDA press releases, several an hour roll in at all times during the day.
Reasons for continued growth of THE BIG LIST were explained the FDA’s spokesman in this way:
Peanut butter is sold by PCA in bulk containers ranging in size from five to 1,700 pounds. The peanut paste is sold in sizes ranging from 35-pound containers to tanker trucks. However, through its investigation, FDA has determined that PCA distributed potentially contaminated products to more than 300 consignee firms, many of whom then further distributed products, for consumption as peanut butter or for use as ingredients in hundreds of different products, such as cookies, crackers, cereal, candy and ice cream.
It’s hard to believe that PCA’s plant in the peanut-land that is Blakely, GA would have so many customers. While FDA works through those 300 consignee firms, sickness and death continues to be the major characteristics of this outbreak. The official number sick with Salmonella Typhimurium stands at 575 with eight deaths also associated with the outbreak. PCA is facing both civil and criminal charges.
We have to wonder what this "volunteer recall" looks like from the inside. FDA negotiates the wording the a press release with each volunteering company. Is FDA working down just those or line or is anyone attempting to contact all 300 of the consignee firms? This outbreak must be making heads explode.