Salmonella

Skippy Peanut Butter Recall

Monsanto does it again.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – March 4, 2011 – Unilever United States, Inc. Skippy Peanut Butter Recalltoday announced a limited recall of Skippy® Reduced Fat Creamy Peanut Butter Spread and Skippy® Reduced Fat Super Chunk Peanut Butter Spread, because it may be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). No other Skippy® products are affected by this recall.

The product was distributed to retail outlets in Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.

The affected product, which is packaged in 16.3 oz plastic jars, is as follows:

  • UPCs: 048001006812 and 048001006782 (located on the side of the jar’s label below the bar code.)
  • Best-If-Used-By Dates: MAY1612LR1, MAY1712LR1, MAY1812LR1, MAY1912LR1, MAY2012LR1 and MAY2112LR1(Stamped on the lid of the jar.)

 

To date, no illnesses related to this issue have been reported.

The recall was initiated as the result of a routine sampling program by the company, which revealed that these finished products may contain the bacteria.

Consumers who have purchased Skippy® Reduced Fat Peanut Butter Spread with the above UPCs and Best-If-Used-By-Dates are urged to discard the product immediately and call the company for a replacement coupon. Consumers can contact the company at1-800-453-3432, which is operational 24 hours a day, for information on the recall. In addition, a consumer services representative is available Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30 AM and 6:00 PM EST.

 

Seriously, USDA – A Food Safety Mobile?

The USDA has come up with a brilliant plan to help consumers survive the next salmonella outbreak.  It’s called the Food Safety Mobile.  The goal of this roving banana of knowledge is to bring safe food handling skills to the masses.  Because after all, these USDA Food Safety Truckconstant outbreaks aren’t the result of questionable farming practices by Big Ag companies but rather the fault of the American people for recklessly choosing to eat their lettuce raw.

This is yet another sign that USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and his cronies are completely unqualified for the job.  Vilsack is not a farmer, nutritionist, doctor, chef or scientist.  He is a lobbyist, specifically a lobbyist for Monsanto.  That’s why he and his staff continue to miss or ignore the fact that the problem is not with consumers cross contaminating their food but rather with factory-farming that is more factory than farm.  In short, Vilsack doesn’t get it.

The Food Safety Mobile is the heart of the USDA’s $1.37 billion push to teach Americans how to wash fruit.  In addition to the traveling roadshow the program also maintains a toll-free hotline for your food safety questions providing assistance in both English and Spanish and an online chat.  Both are available from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.  Oh, and I would be remiss not to mention the youtube channel, food handling demos, coloring books and of course the Food Safety Mobile Discovery Game.

This is such a waste of tax payer dollars.  Hey, Mr. Vilsack, here’s a thought – instead of buying a million dollar lunch truckFood Safety Mobile how about not imposing dangerously lax regulations on genetically modified foods in exchange for campaign contributions for your boss?  That way you could save the over-taxed and ignored citizenry a nickle or two.  Not to mention how it would help clean up one of the most corrupt branches of the federal government.

You can take a virtual tour of the USDA’s Food Safety Mobile HERE but be warned – the decor has been known to trigger epileptic seizures.  You’d think a billion dollars could by an interior that doesn’t look like Walt Disney threw up.

Head USDA Scientist Questions Organic Safety?

Roger Beachy, as director of the USDA’s newly formed National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), is the lead researcher for the USDA.  He was appointed to his post by President Obama in October 2009.  Before taking this position he was the founding president of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri where he’d worked since 1998.  From 1991 to 1998 Beachy was the department head of the Division of Plant Biology at The Scripps Research Institute.  From 1978 to 1991 he was a biology professor at Washington University in St. Louis.  Sounds like a qualified scientist right?

While at Washington University, Beachy worked on the Monsanto sponsored project that resulted in the first genetically modified food crop.  On the project tomatoes were modified for resistance to disease by adding genes from flounder.  The world’s first Frankenfood.

Beachy’s notoriety lead to his position at The Scripps Research Institute where he again worked on formulating plant genetics so they would be resistant to disease.    Scripps has worked hand-in-hand with Monsanto for years.  The Dansford Plant Science Center is funded by Monsanto and it’s mission is to, “improve the human condition through plant science.”  In other words it is charged with developing more GM produce.

What does this tell us about Roger Beachy?  That from 1978 until being appointed to the USDA in 2009, Beachy was an employee of Monsanto, the company responsible for introducing e coli into our food system.  Thirty-one years as an employee of a company that he is now responsible for making policy over.  Another trip through the Monsanto revolving door.

Just how dangerous are Beachy’s genetically modified Frankenfoods?  The US government has set up a web site (foodsafety.gov) to educate Americans about food borne microbials.  The site also tracks food illness outbreaks and recalls, most of which are the result of genetically tampering with food.  Among the recent outbreaks traced back to GM foods are the spinach e coli contamination in 2006, 2009’s Salmonellosis in peanut butter scare and just this week a massive recall of products containing hydrolyzed vegetable protein.

This week, Beachy is attending an international conference in Guadalajara, Mexico sponsored by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.  When Beachy was asked by Tom Philpott of Grist Magazine, “Would NIFA be funding research for organic ag?”  Beachy’s reply stunned all in attendance.

Beachy arrogantly said, “I’m concerned about the safety of organic food.”  It also sent his his chief counsel, Rachel Goldfarb, scrambling to clean up the mess.  She immediately cut him off saying, “This is just the sort of thing he should not be discussing without approval,” which ended the conversation.

Check out Philpott’s first-hand account of the exchange HERE.

The irony and absurdity of the very scientist who developed the lethal genetic modification of produce calling the safety of organic farming into question is the Mount Everest of hypocrisy.  If you would like to share your displeasure with Mr. Beachy you can contact him via e-mail at rbeachy@nifa.usda.gov, by phone at (202) 720 – 4423, fax to (202) 720 – 8987 or snail mail to:

Roger Beachy
United States Department of Agriculture
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
1400 Independence Avenue SW, Stop 2201
Washington, DC 20250.

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Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
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2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
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2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
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