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Texas companies check potential pistachio contamination
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08:57, April 01, 2009

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Food companies in Dallas, Texas, that use pistachios ingredients began to check their products Tuesday afternoon, following federal health officials warning on Monday not to eat any products containing pistachios while they are investigating.

The Food & Drug Administration and the California Department of Public Health are investigating salmonella contamination in pistachio products sold by Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella Inc, Calif.

The company has stopped all distribution of processed pistachios and was voluntarily recalling more than 2 million pounds of its roasted nuts shipped since last fall.

Because the pistachios were used as ingredients in a variety of foods, it is likely this recall will impact many products.

The Dallas-based companies were scrambling to check their production lines to make sure their products were not affected.

But industry sources believe that Frito-Lay Inc., the nation's largest snack maker, sells at least two products that could be affected, including pistachios sold in small cellophane bags, usually sold at service stations and convenience stores.

Its highest profile pistachio product -- TrueNorth Pistachio Crisps, baked snack crackers -- is sold at grocers nationwide.

The contamination involves multiple strains of salmonella which could cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

FDA is working closely with the pistachio industry and recommends that consumers avoid eating pistachio products until further information is available about the scope of affected products.

Source:Xinhua



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