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Peanut Butter Salmonella Poisoning
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Company expands peanut butter recall

Mar 12, 2007 | ConAgra Foods Inc. has extended its recall of all peanut butter produced at a plant in Georgia by more than a year, back to October 2004, the Food and Drug Administration reports.

The recall covers all Peter Pan peanut butter and all Great Value peanut butter beginning with product code 2111, including peanut butter toppings.

Peanut butter has a long shelf life, and the FDA’s announcement reflects the ongoing investigation, said ConAgra spokeswoman Stephanie Childs. Any peanut butter matching the recall, regardless of the date, can be returned to the place of purchase, or customers can send the lid to ConAgra for a refund.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 425 people have fallen ill from the outbreak of salmonella that has been traced back to the plant in Sylvester, Ga.

In the meantime, peanut butter lovers in Western North Carolina can still get their fix, albeit of other brands.

“We’ve been able to replace the lost volume with other national brands and our own Laura Lynn brand,” said Ron Freeman, chief financial officer of Ingles Markets.

On a recent morning, the Ingles at 915 Merrimon Ave. included four shelves of peanut butter selections, though no Peter Pan brand.

“We haven’t been told when (The ConAgra plant) will reopen or how long it will take after reopening for us to get new shipments of Peter Pan,” said Freeman, who added there has not been any price impact from the recall. The store doesn’t carry the Great Value brand, he said.

Bi-Lo spokeswoman Ann Cheshire said the S.C.–based chain has had no problems stocking the shelves with other brands, a view echoed at the Grove Corner Market. “We don’t seem to be having any trouble,” said staff member Jack Ramshaw.

“If you want peanut butter, it’s out there,” said shopper Kay Dechant of Asheville, who said she purchased some last week.

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