A vegetable protein recall issued late last month by Basic Food Flavors, Inc. is resulting in a cascade of products being pulled from shelves due to the potential for salmonella food poisoning.
Over the last two weeks, the FDA has announced recalls for T. Marzetti vegetable dips, Castella Chicken Soup, Homemade Gourmet Tortilla Soup Mix, and various products by Tim’s Cascade Snacks and Earth Island’s “Follow Your Heart” products due to the potential for salmonella infection. All of the recalled products contained hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP) manufactured by Basic Food Flavors, Inc., which warned customers that it’s protein was found to have salmonella contamination late last month.
Salmonella is a type of bacteria that attacks the gastrointestinal tract, causing mild to severe food poisoning. For most healthy adults, symptoms of food poisoning from salmonella typically resolve after a few days or weeks. However, young children, the elderly, and individuals with compromised immune systems have an increased risk of suffering severe food poisoning after ingesting the bacteria. If not properly treated, some cases of salmonella food poisoning can lead to hospitalization, dehydration or death.
HVP is similar to monosodium glutamate (MSG), except that it is a liquid instead of a salt. It is used as a flavor enhancer in many foods. Basic Food Flavors, Inc. has not issued a specific release giving the details of the recall, instead publishing a complex list of product codes affected by the HVP recall on its website with no explanation.
While there have reportedly been no illnesses connected with the recall, it has caused a number of companies that used the ingredient to pull their products from store shelves. Recalls that have resulted from the HVP salmonella contamination include:
- Johnny’s Fine Foods French Dip Powered Au Jus
- Tim’s Cascade Snacks Hawaiian Kettle Style Potato Chips – Sweet Maui Onion and Hawaiian Sweet Maui Onion Rings
- Castella Imports Inc., Castella Chicken Soup Base
- T. Marzetti Southwest Ranch and Spinach Veggie Dips, sold under the T. Marzetti, Oak Lake Farms and Great Value labels
- Homemade Gourmet Tortilla Soup Mix
- Earth Island “Follow Your Heart” products.
For more details, specific lot numbers and product names, see the FDA HVP recall press releases for each product line.
Customers who bought these products may return them to the place of purchase for a full refund.