For Immediate Release: February 27, 2007
Contact: Communication Office
BURLINGTON -The Vermont Department of Health is updating the health advisory regarding salmonella contamination of all Peter Pan peanut butter products and certain Great Value peanut butter, to include 3/4 ounce and 1.1 ounce single serving packs of Peter Pan peanut butter.
Product testing by several states has confirmed that ALL Peter Pan peanut butter products - and jars of Great Value peanut butter beginning with the product code "2111"- are the source of the salmonella outbreak.
Symptoms of illness caused by eating food contaminated with salmonella include fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Salmonella can invade the bloodstream and cause life-threatening infections for people with weakened immune systems or other underlying health conditions.
"We are asking Vermonters who think they may be ill at this time from eating the suspected peanut butter to contact their doctor immediately, and notify the Health Department," said Cort Lohff, MD, state epidemiologist for the Vermont Department of Health. "If you are not ill but purchased the peanut butter products at some time, you can dispose of them normally."
Illness should be reported to the Health Department at 802-863-7240 or 1-800-640-4374 (Vermont only).
The Health Department will only test Peter Pan and Great Value jars of peanut butter from persons who have been confirmed to have salmonella, and only if the strain of salmonella matches that of the outbreak strain (Salmonella Tennessee).
Institutional food establishments and other food service providers who have received reports of illness from consumers after they ate one of these products are encouraged to share that information with the Health Department also.
Both the Peter Pan and Great Value brands are manufactured in a single facility in Georgia by ConAgra. ConAgra is recalling and destroying all Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter beginning with product code 2111 that already was distributed, according to the FDA.
For more information on the current outbreak of foodborne illness related to peanut butter, visit the CDC website home page and click the "Salmonella" link: http://www.cdc.gov/