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Nut butter spreads are being associated with a salmonella outbreak that has caused 11 people in 9 states to fall ill between July and November. Almost all those diagnosed said that they ate nut butters within a week of experiencing food poisoning symptoms.
JEM Raw Chocolate LLC, an American nut butter manufacturer, announced last week that it is voluntarily recalling all its nut butter spreads due to potential salmonella contamination, CNN reports. The spreads are sold nationally online and in stores.
There have been no deaths or hospitalizations associated with the nut butters. Symptoms of salmonella include abdominal cramping, diarrhea, and fever. These symptoms usually present about 12 to 72 hours after exposure to the salmonella bacteria and most people recover in four to seven days.
JEM Raw Chocolate recommends that anyone who purchased its nut butter products between July and November of this year either dispose of or return them. Although the recall is voluntary and none of the company's products have tested positive for salmonella, according to JEM Raw Chocolate CEO, Jen Moore. "We are taking these steps because consumer safety is our top priority," she said of the recall.
The Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration are working with state and local officials on this salmonella outbreak. They are trying to confirm the source and get it under control.
Oregon has reported three cases while California, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, North Carolina, and New Jersey are each reporting a single case. Health officials interviewed eight of the eleven patients who fell ill over the four-month outbreak period (between July and October). All of them had consumed nut butter or nut butter spread in the week before illness. Six of them reported eating JEM Raw nut butter spread.
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