Approximately 1 million pounds of pistachio nuts, both inshell and shelled, have been recalled due to a risk that they may be contaminated with salmonella and cause food poisoning. The pistachios were sold in consumer packages as well as to manufacturers throughout the United States who may have rebranded the nuts or used them in other products, like trail mix, sold since September 1, 2008.
The pistachio recall was issued by the FDA and Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella, Inc. on March 30, 2009, after Kraft Foods discovered the presence of multiple different strains of salmonella in pistaschio nuts processed by Setton, which were used in their “Back to Nature” Trail Mix.
According to Setton, the pistachio nut recall is not in any way related to the recent peanut and peanut butter recalls issued as a result of contaminated product distributed by Peanut Corporation of America.
Since late last year, hundreds of cases of salmonella food poisoning have been tied to peanuts and peanut butter involved in that recall. So far, there are no known cases of food poisoning reportedly linked to the pistachio salmonella contamination.
Salmonella bacteria can cause severe illness that usually appears within 12 to 72 hours after eating contaminated food. Symptoms of salmonella food poisoning may include abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, bloody diarrhea and fever.
While most healthy adults recover within a few days or weeks, young children, the elderly and those with a weak immune system may be more susceptible to severe food poisoning, which could be fatal if not properly treated.
The Setton Pistachio recall applies to bulk roasted shelled pistachios and roasted inshell pistachios sold in 2,000 lbs., 1,700 lbs, 1,800 lbs. and 1,000 lbs. tote bags to wholesalers, as well as Setton Farms brand roasted salted shelled pistachios sold in 9 oz. bags (UPC Code: 034325020252).
The branded Setton Farms pistachio products were distributed in South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky with “Best Before” dates between 1/06/10 and 1/19/10. However, the wholesale bags were sold to companies which may have distributed the product throughout the United States under a variety of different brand names.
The FDA has recommended that consumers avoid eating all pistachio nuts and other products that may contain pistachio until more information is determined about the scope of the contamination.