Hy-Vee Inc. is voluntarily recalling products made in its bakery departments because they contain peanut butter that has the potential to be contaminated with salmonella: Peanut Butter Cookies, Monster Cookies, Peanut Butter Reese's Pieces Cookies, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, Lunchbox Reese's Pieces Cookies, Lunchbox Peanut Butter Cookies, People Chow Party Mix and Assorted Truffle Fudge. All sell-by dates are included in this recall. The products are sold in various packaging and quantities and have a Hy-Vee price labels attached. All items should be destroyed or may be returned to Hy-Vee in Storm Lake and other locations for a full refund.
The action was taken immediately after Peanut Corporation of America (PCA), the Georgia-based company that supplies bulk peanut butter paste to Hy-Vee and other food marketers, issued a recall of the peanut butter ingredient used to make the Hy-Vee bakery products. The recall is a precautionary step because of an unresolved nationwide outbreak of salmonella.
The government on Saturday had advised consumers to avoid eating cookies, cakes, ice cream and other foods containing peanut butter until health officials learn more about the contamination.
Salmonella, a bacteria, is the most common cause of food poisoning in the U.S., causing diarrhea, cramping and fever. The nearest illness reported to date was in Nebraska.
It 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 cases, 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 identified items, sold at the local store and at all Hy-Vee stores in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Minnesota, have not been directly linked to the salmonella outbreak and there have been no reported cases of the illness linked to the Hy-Vee products.
Hy-Vee Bakery Manufacturing of Des Moines, supplies stores with many of their baked goods. PCA recalled a number of lots of the product this week after health inspectors found salmonella contamination in an already-opened container of peanut butter at a nursing home in Minnesota. Hy-Vee had been shipped product from two of the lots. Production was suspended immediately and stores were instructed to remove baked goods that contained peanut butter from store shelves.
In addition, Hy-Vee has sent samples of the peanut butter to an independent lab for testing. Company officials emphasize that all these measures are precautionary and they are keeping close watch on the situation and FDA's efforts to find the source of the outbreak. Customers with questions may contact the management of the Storm Lake Hy-Vee store.
Last week, Kellogg's recalled products including Keebler Soft Batch Homestyle Peanut Butter Cookies, Famous Amos Peanut Butter Cookies and Keebler Cheese & Peanut Butter Sandwich Crackers. Kellogg said Monday federal authorities have confirmed that salmonella was found in a single package of its peanut butter crackers.