The CDC and state and local health departments are advising consumers who are no longer ill with a diarrheal illness after eating potentially contaminated Peter Pan or Great Value peanut butter to throw the product away; however, if you have contacted Marler Clark and we are pursuing a legal claim on your behalf, we advise you to save your jar. Keep it in a plastic bag, in a temperature-controlled place (like the refrigerator), and after we have received your paperwork in the mail, we will contact you with information about where to send your jar to have it tested for the presence of Salmonella.

WTOC reports that Officials with the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta say they suspected the peanut butter was linked to the outbreak all along, but never had any proof until Friday.

The jars of Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter came from the same plant in Sylvester, Georgia, right outside of Albany. Just last week, health officials urged people who had the jars with the product ID code beginning with 2111 to stop eating it immediately.

The jars made at least 329 people sick, 18 in Georgia, and one in our area. So far, no deaths have been linked to the outbreak. Although at least two wrongful death lawsuits have been filed. Health officials say the results is actually good news. "This is a vital link because not only is it connected to those who have been sickened, but it actually links it to the plant," said Lola Russell with the CDC. 

According to an article in the Charleston Daily Mail, Mercer County church is taking no chances with its popular Easter fundraiser.

Trinity United Methodist Church of Bluefield threw away 325 chocolate-covered peanut butter eggs, along with several hundred others that had not yet been coated, on Monday because of concerns about salmonella, Pastor Charles Miller said Tuesday.

The handmade Easter treats, which the church has sold since 1990, were made with Peter Pan peanut butter.

1. If you or a family member are still sick, please seek medical treatment.

2. If you do seek medical treatment, please ask that a stool culture be done to try and confirm that you have been sickened by salmonella. A stool culture is the only way to confirm that you have been sickened by the Salmonella bacteria.

3. You should contact you local health department about your concerns and to relate information about your family members’ illnesses. Please make note of your peanut butter label, the brand, and the product code found on the lid—“2111” is the implicated product. Also note when and where you purchased it. This information will help the health department’s investigation.

4. If you have any left over peanut butter, please put the entire jar in a plastic bag and place it in a cool spot. Please let your local health department know that you have it. They may offer to test it. If not, we will arrange to have it tested.

5. If any family member is currently sick, please be sure to attend to careful hygiene. Frequent hand washing can help reduce the risk of spreading infection among family members.

Marler Clark is pursuing claims on behalf of over 100 families who have contacted the firm in the wake of the Salmonella outbreak traced to contaminated peanut butter, and will file a Salmonella lawsuit against ConAgra foods tomorrow.  You can keep up to date on the Salmonella outbreak here at the Salmonella blog, or at the FDA Web site.