Archive for the ‘Food recalls’ Category

E. coli found in factory sample of Nestle Toll House dough

June 30, 2009

Investigators with the FDA have found evidence of E. Coli in a package of Nestlé Toll House cookie dough at the company’s Danville, Va., plant.

The discovery comes nearly two weeks after Nestlé USA closed the plant following the news the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control had linked a nationwide outbreak of E. coli 0157:H7 with Nestlé’s popular ready-to-bake cookie dough. Nestlé closed its plant the day after it received the information from the government agencies and issued a recall of about 300,000 cases of the product.

“It’s very disappointing,” said Edie Burge, a spokeswoman for Nestlé at its Glendale, Calif., offices.

While obtaining a contaminated sample was key to the investigation, the question of just how E. coli got into the Danville plant has yet to be answered, and investigators will continue their work with further testing, said Burge.

The Danville factory is actually home to production of two Nestlé brands: Toll House cookie dough, and Buitoni, which makes fresh pasta. The Buitoni side of the operations have been unaffected by the contamination and work has continued there. The Toll House plant has been closed for 11 days and its more-than-200 employees are being offered paid time off or shifts in the Buitoni plant as they become available, said Burge.

Sixty-nine people in 29 states have been made ill with E. coli, allegedly as a result of eating raw cookie dough from Nestlé. Forty-six of those ill are confirmed to have the outbreak strain, and 34 persons have been hospitalized. Nine developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a form of kidney failure; no one has died.

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No leads yet in E. coli outbreak

June 25, 2009

Investigation at Nestlé’s Virginia plant by FDA continues

Speculation about the possible contamination of a popular brand of ready-to-bake cookie dough with E. coli O157:H7 continues, but so far there have been no leads.

It’s been a week since officials at Nestlé USA, based in Solon, Ohio, learned about a possible link to their Toll House cookie dough in a nationwide outbreak of E. coli. So far, at least 70 people have been sickened in 30 states, and 30 of those people have been hospitalized, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Seven of the victims developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a form of kidney failure. No one has died.

Nestlé, in cooperation with the Food and Drug Administration and the CDC, is investigating whether their product is the source of the contamination, and just how E. coli may have ended up in their product. They issued a full recall of 300,000 cases of the cookie dough immediately after being notified by the FDA of the possible link to their company last week, and have closed their production facility in Virginia while the investigation continues.

“We just don’t know at this point,” said Nestlé spokeswoman Edie Burge early this afternoon. The FDA is looking at “every aspect of production,” she said, from the water the plant uses to operating procedures, and the manufacturing plant’s air control system.

Two lawsuits have been filed against Nestlé by people in California and Colorado, and another family in Oregon has asked for an apology from Nestle for the illness their teenage daughter suffered after eating what they believe was contaminated cookie dough.

“We just learned about this issue last week and reacted as quickly as we could,” Laurie MacDonald, vice president of corporate and brand affairs, told the Portland Oregonian earlier this week. “If it is determined that our product is the source of the girl’s illness, we will certainly apologize to her and her parents.”

If people do become ill, Nestlé encourages them to contact their physician, said Burge.

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And the litigation begins

June 25, 2009

Lawsuits against Nestlé USA filed in California and Colorado

Two lawsuits have been filed against Nestlé USA after people were sickened with E. coli O157:H7, believed to be linked to the company’s popular Toll House cookie dough.

Jillian Collins, an 18-year-old San Carlos, Calif., resident and Madison Sedbrook, 6, of Highlands Ranch, Colo., were both hospitalized after becoming gravely ill with E. coli contamination. The families of both victims believe their illnesses stem from eating raw Nestlé Toll House cookie dough. In each case, the genetic fingerprint of their tests matched that of the outbreak strain which has infected at least 70 people across the country. Both cases are being handled by Marler TollhousecookiesClark law firm of Seattle, which specializes in food-borne illnesses.

Collins, who filed the first lawsuit against Nestlé over the weekend, was hospitalized for a week at Stanford Medical Center after eating raw cookie dough on May 20 and 22. On May 25, she became painfully ill and suffered “abdominal cramps, nausea and bloody diarrhea” according to San Francisco Chronicle.

Sedbrook, who will begin first grade in the fall, suffered an even more dramatic bout with the pathogen.

“Madison was on the verge of kidney failure last month when doctors determined E. coli bacteria were the cause of her bloody diarrhea and vomiting,” Denver Post reported today. “The little girl’s blood had begun to clump, making it nearly impossible for her kidneys to function…”

“Not knowing the source of her illness, she continued to eat Nestlé cookie dough, and by the first week of May, she had abdominal cramps, fever, and bloody diarrhea,” Marler Clark attorney Bill Marler wrote in Marler Blog. “Over the next several weeks, the family sought medical care several times for Madison’s illness, which deepened in severity.  She was admitted to the hospital and then released before being rushed back and admitted to pediatric intensive care.”

Both Collins and Sedbrook eventually recovered, and both were able to attend school commencement ceremonies after their release from hospital.

Nestlé, in cooperation with the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control, is investigating whether their product is the source of the contamination, and just how E. coli may have ended up in their product. They issued a full recall of 300,000 cases of the cookie dough immediately after being notified by the FDA of the possible link to their company, and have closed their production facility in Virginia while the investigation continues.

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Recall Friday

November 21, 2008

The Food Safety and Inspection Service, a division of the United States Department of Agriculture, or the Food and Drug Administration, has issued the following recall(s) over the past week:

Nov. 17, 2008 – Nestlé Prepared Foods Company of Springfield, Utah, is recalling approximately 879,565 pounds of frozen chicken meals that may contain foreign materials. The problem was discovered after the company received consumer complaints and a report of one injury. The company identified the objects as small pieces of hard plastic. (More information)

Nov. 20, 2008 – PANOS brands, of Saddle Brook, N.J., is recalling Vegan Rella Cheddar Block, (a cheese substitute) with a sell-by date of 12/09/2008. This product is being recalled because it may possibly contain an undeclared milk protein. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk protein run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume this product. No other lot or variety of Vegan is involved. (More information)

Nov. 20, 2008 – Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. is initiating a voluntary recall of 24 oz. Wegmans Italian Classics Seasoned Tomato Sauce with a use-by- date of 11/26/08, UPC 77890 79010. The product is being recalled because the package may actually contain a milk ingredient which is not declared on the label. The recall of this product is of concern only to those individuals who have an allergy to milk. Consumption may cause a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction in persons with an allergy to milk. No other code dates are affected by this recall. (More information)

Nov. 14, 2008Seattle’s Favorite Gourmet Cookies & Dessert Co. of Tukwila, Wash., is recalling Orange Cranberry and Banana Nut Muffin Tops because they contain undeclared milk. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk run the risk of serious or life threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products. Orange Cranberry and Banana Nut Muffin Tops were distributed nationwide to coffee shops, espresso stands, and retail outlets. (More information)

Recall Friday

November 14, 2008
The Food Safety and Inspection Service, a division of the United States Department of Agriculture, or the Food and Drug Administration, has issued the following recall(s) over the past week:

Nov. 8: R. L. Zeigler Co., Inc., a Selma, Ala., firm, is recalling approximately 28,610 pounds of hot dog products that may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. This is a Class I recall, categorized as a high risk to health. (More information.)

Nov. 7: Barber Foods Company, a Portland, Maine, establishment, is recalling approximately 41,415 pounds of frozen stuffed chicken products that may contain foreign materials. This is a Class I recall, categorized as a high risk to health. (More information.)

Nov. 7: Nestlé USA, of Glendale, Calif., is voluntarily recalling two production codes of Nestlé Nesquik Strawberry Powder 21.8 ounce that may contain small fragments of aluminum. (More information.)

Nov. 7: Amy’s Kitchen Inc. of Santa Rosa, Calif., is voluntarily recalling Tofu Scramble in a Pocket Sandwich Lot 10 H148, because of the presence of milk in a product that is labeled non-dairy. The 4.0 oz net wt frozen product, sold in U.S. grocery stores, comes in a retail package labeled as Amy’s Tofu Scramble in a Pocket Sandwich. (More information.)