Local residents call about salmonella scare

February 16, 2007|by DAN DEARTH

The Washington County Health Department confirmed on Thursday that peanut butter contaminated with salmonella was sold in the Tri-State area.

Rod MacRae, health department spokesman, said one person from Washington County claimed to have been sickened after eating the peanut butter, and several people called the department to express concern.

Local health officials will conduct an investigation to determine whether contaminated peanut butter made the person sick, he said.

"At some point, sampling of the peanut butter would be desirable," MacRae said. "... As this becomes more common knowledge, I suspect we'll get more calls."

On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration warned consumers not to eat Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter if the product code on the jar began with the number "2111."


MacRae said he was uncertain how many jars of contaminated peanut butter were distributed locally.

ConAgra didn't return telephone calls Thursday.

MacRae said people who think they might have ingested contaminated peanut butter should contact their health-care provider immediately.

What is salmonella?

Salmonella infection is known each year to sicken about 40,000 people in the United States, according to the CDC. Salmonellosis, as the infection is known, kills about 600 people annually.

Symptoms can include diarrhea, fever, dehydration, abdominal pain and vomiting.

To get a refund ...

Consumers should send lids and their names and addresses to ConAgra Foods, P.O. Box 57078, Irvine, CA 92619-7078. For more information, call 1-866-344-6970.

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