Vermont Department of Health Advises Consumers to Avoid Pistachios

For Immediate Release: April 9, 2009

Media Contact:
Vermont Department of Health
802-863-7281

BURLINGTON – The Vermont Department of Health is advising Vermonters of a widespread pistachio product recall overseen by the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration). The company, Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella, Inc., a distributor in California, has recalled more than 2 million pounds of the nuts beginning on March 30, 2009.

While no illnesses have currently been confirmed nationwide related to the pistachios, Vermonters are advised to be aware of the current concern and avoid eating pistachios or food products containing pistachios (such as pistachio bakery goods and pistachio ice cream).

Many products are being recalled, and the list is growing. A searchable database of all products that are so far affected by the FDA recalls is posted at: http://www.fda.gov/pistachios/

“We’ll continue to look for any cases in Vermont, and our Food & Lodging personnel are checking with some large wholesalers and retailers of pistachios to make sure they are also aware of the recall,” said Acting State Epidemiologist Patsy Kelso.

The contamination in pistachio products, according to the FDA, involves multiple strains of Salmonella, a type of bacteria that can cause illness, and serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

Symptoms of foodborne illness caused by Salmonella include fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Anyone with symptoms of Salmonella illness should contact their health care provider.

For more information about Salmonella illness go to healthvermont.gov.

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