Kashi Company, Martin’s Food Markets, and Giant Food Stores, LLC have issued a recall of several items that may be contaminated with a pathogenic bacteria known as Listeria monocytogenes. On the other hand, Hostess has also recalled approximately 710,000 units of snacks due to the items containing peanut residue.
There have been no reports of infection due to the Kashi products’ contamination. Listeriosis is a common illness caused by eating contaminated products. It can be lethal in some cases as it can cause headaches, nausea, fever, miscarriages, and stillbirths. Peanut allergy can also be deadly in some cases. It is regarded as the most common cause of food-related allergy death.
The infected products
The products to be recalled by Kashi are as follows:
|Better if Used Before
|Kashi GOLEAN Honey Pecan Baklava Bars, 19 oz.
|Jul 21, 2016, Aug 07 2016, and Sep 13 2016
|Bear Naked Soft Baked Granola – Cinnamon/Sunflower Butter, 11 oz.
|Jan 10, 2017, Jan 11, 2017
For Hostess, the recall had to be issued due to not displaying information about its peanut residue in several products, mainly Hostess Snack Cake and Donuts. These snacks are supposedly safe for those that suffer from an allergy to peanuts, although the amount of residue is very low and should not cause any major health concerns. These products are known to reach hundreds of grocery stores, drug stores, convenience stores, distributors and mass merchandisers all over the U.S. and Mexico.
Hostess Brands, LLC Issues Recall On Possible Undeclared Peanut Residue In Certain Snack Cake And Donut Produ… https://t.co/NqHULr8jRO
— U.S. FDA (@FDArecalls) June 4, 2016
The recalled Hostess products were Cinnabon Stix, Hostess Snack Cake and Donut Products, Safeway 8” Single Layer Red Velvet Cake, Chick-fil-A Chocolate Chunk Cookies, ACME 12” Decorated Chocolate Chip Cookie, and Jewel 12” Decorated Chocolate Chip Cookie. For the full list of affected Hostess products with their UPC and expiration dates, visit this link.
At least two allergic reactions have been reported to Hostess. The company advises anyone who has bought these products to discard them and to call 800-868-2813 to report the incident.
How the residue was found
Grain Craft is a mass merchandiser or supply chain that sells flour to large firms, and the presence of peanut residue was notified by Grain Craft to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It was first noticed by a customer back on April 26; further analyses revealed that peanut residue had leaked on several batches of soft red winter wheat flour.
The company halted the manufacturing and distribution process of all of its soft red winter wheat flour by April 30. The FDA recommended a recall to be issued for the contaminated products to which Grain Craft agreed. The FDA has been contacting the companies to have received contaminated flour from Gran Craft to assess the potential threat to the health of peanut-sensitive customers.
Hostess is one of Gran Craft chief associates, and they immediately complied with the recall issue. Two children with peanut allergies had suffered from allergic reactions after consuming some of the infected products. The batches that contained products that were suspected to be contaminated were tested and the shipments have been recalled.
We’re sorry to announce an expanded recall to include two varieties of Kashi snack bars. More here: https://t.co/5dwkuJgWFZ
— KashiFoods (@KashiFoods) June 3, 2016
The risks of listeriosis and peanut allergy
Both listeriosis and peanut allergy are illnesses that act upon the immune system.
Listeriosis is a primary concern in the U.S. due to being one of the most infectious diseases when it comes to food manufacturing. It is characterized by muscle pain, diarrhea, fever and gastrointestinal issues, as informed by the CDC. The people who are most at risk after contracting listeriosis are pregnant women, young children and those that have a weakened immune system. The disease can diverge into meningitis and septicemia.
To reduce the risk of contracting listeriosis, customers are advised to wash raw produce thoroughly, separating uncooked meat and poultry from vegetables and cooked food, and making sure that the milk is not humid when stored. Although these measures are ideal for meat and vegetables, it is very hard to avoid being infected with listeriosis if the bacteria is found on a massively-produced item whose packing is sealed at the time of purchase.
In the case of peanut allergy, its symptoms are similar to listeriosis, but are much broader and not focused on the gastrointestinal system. An allergic person may suffer from vomiting, diarrhea, asthma and even cardiac arrest in a severe allergic episode. It is not yet known why people develop allergies to peanuts, but scientists believe that exposure to peanut-based products at an early age has something to do with the development of an allergy.
The symptoms of peanut allergy may appear either immediately or several hours after consumption. If a person fears he or she might be allergic to peanuts, then it must be consulted with a physician, mainly through a skin prick test to measure the amount of Immunoglobin E in a blood sample.