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FDA Investigates Multistate Outbreak of Salmonella Braenderup linked to Nut Butter Products Manufactured by nSpired Natural Foods Inc.

October 17, 2014

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local officials investigated a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Braenderup infections. We have moved quickly to learn as much as possible and prevent additional people from becoming ill. We recognize that people will be concerned about this outbreak, and we will continue to provide updates and advice.

What was the Problem and What was Done About It?

The FDA, CDC, and state and local officials investigated a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Braenderup illnesses linked to nut butter products manufactured by nSpired Natural Foods, Inc. of Ashland, Oregon. On October 16, 2014, the CDC reported that their investigation of the outbreak was over. The FDA investigation of this outbreak is continuing.

The CDC reported that six people were infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Braenderup in five states since January 1, 2014.  The number of people identified in each state was as follows: Connecticut (1), Iowa (1), New Mexico (1), Tennessee (1), and Texas (2).  Illness onset dates ranged from January 20, 2014 to May 16, 2014. One hospitalization was reported. No deaths were reported.

The clinical isolates have genetic patterns matching those of environmental samples taken during February and July 2014 inspections of an nSpired Natural Foods facility in Ashland, Oregon.

On August 19, 2014, nSpired Natural Foods, Inc. recalled certain retail lots of Arrowhead Mills® Peanut Butters, MaraNatha® Almond Butters and Peanut Butters and specific private label nut butters (listed below) packaged in glass and plastic jars because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

Between July 15 and August 29, 2014, the FDA conducted an inspection at the nSpired Natural Foods facility in Ashland, Oregon.  During the inspection, FDA investigators made eight inspectional observations.  These observations do not represent a final agency determination regarding compliance with FDA’s requirements.

  • The first observation was that the firm failed to manufacture foods under conditions and controls necessary to minimize the potential for microorganism growth, based on environmental samples that were positive for Salmonella.
  • The second observation was that the firm failed to appropriately clean and sanitize equipment, with food residue being noticed on a food contact surface after cleaning.
  • Another observation was that an employee did not wash his hands thoroughly when they might have become soiled or contaminated during facility operations.
  • A fourth observation was that food contact surfaces were not designed to withstand their intended use, with investigators finding cracks in plastic buckets used in the facility.
  • Another observation was that shovels failed to have smoothly bonded food contact surfaces to minimize accumulation of organic matter and the opportunity for growth of microorganisms.
  • Investigators observed that the procedure used to sanitize equipment has not been shown to provide adequate sanitizing treatment
  • The seventh observation was that the plant was not built in a way to allow the floor to be adequately cleaned and kept clean.
  • The eighth observation was that no backflow protection existed for piping systems discharging waste water, with a hose submerged in the sink for sanitizing clean utensils being connected directly to the sink nozzle without backflow protection.

What are the Symptoms of Salmonella?

Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people recover without treatment.

How Soon do Symptoms Appear After Exposure?

Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection.

What are the Complications of Salmonella Infections?

In some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. In these patients, the Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream, and then to other body sites and can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.

Who is at Risk?

Children are the most likely to get salmonellosis. The rate of diagnosed infections in children less than five years old is higher than the rate in all other persons. Children younger than 5 years of age, the elderly, and those people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have severe infections. It is estimated that approximately 400 persons die each year with acute salmonellosis.

What Specific Products were Recalled?

On August 19, 2014, nSpired Natural Foods, Inc. issued a recall notice for 43 nut butter products.  The products were distributed nationwide to retail stores and food service distribution customers.

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ITEM DESCRIPTIONUNIT UPCBEST BY DATE RANGE
Arrowhead Mills Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter 16 oz.07433347032831DEC14 thru 14MAY15
Arrowhead Mills Organic Creamy Peanut Butter 16 oz.07433347052631DEC14 thru 14MAY15
MaraNatha Roasted Creamy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165106032524DEC14 thru 17JUN15
MaraNatha Roasted Crunchy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165109201226DEC14 thru 06JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Roasted Creamy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165106021923DEC14 thru 04JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Roasted Crunchy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165109203604JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Raw Crunchy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165109212822DEC14 thru 01JUL15
MaraNatha Organic Raw Creamy Almond Butter 16 oz.05165109217314APR15 thru 01JUL15
MaraNatha Raw Almond Butter 16 oz.05165109218005APR15 thru 02JUL15
MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter 16 oz.05165109219707APR15
MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter 16 oz.05165109220306APR15 thru 07APR15
MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109221006JAN15 thru 20MAY15
MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109232603JAN15 thru 25JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109233302JAN15 thru 15MAY15
MaraNatha Organic No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109235704JAN15 thru 27JUN15
MaraNatha Organic No Stir Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109236405JAN15 thru 28JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Raw Almond Butter 8 oz.05165109263013APR15 thru 30JUN15
MaraNatha Roasted Creamy Almond Butter 26 oz.05165119289704DEC14 thru 21APR15
MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 26 oz.05165109291303JAN15 thru 25JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 26 oz.05165109292002JAN15 thru 25JUN15
MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Almond Butter 12 oz.05165109368212DEC14 thru 21JUL15
MaraNatha No Stir Crunchy Almond Butter 12 oz.05165109369917DEC14 thru 20JUL15
MaraNatha Organic No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109375004JAN15 thru 10APR15
MaraNatha Organic No Stir Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 16 oz.05165109376705JAN15 thru 19MAY15
MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Almond Butter 12 oz.05165109368214DEC14 thru 14JUL15
MaraNatha No Stir Crunchy Almond Butter 12 oz.05165109369917DEC14 thru 18JUL15
MaraNatha Creamy Maple Almond Butter 12 oz.05165109386630MAY15 thru 31MAY15
MaraNatha Creamy Roasted Almond Butter 340 grams05165109305711DEC14 thru 02JUN15
MaraNatha Creamy Raw Almond Butter 340 grams05165109306407MAY15 thru 05JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 500 grams05165109330903JAN15 thru 24JUN15
MaraNatha Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 500 grams05165109331631DEC14 thru 15MAY15
MaraNatha No Stir Creamy Peanut Butter with Salt 500 grams05165109340820MAY15
MaraNatha No Stir Crunchy Peanut Butter with Salt 500 grams05165109341513MAR15 thru 28JUN15
MaraNatha Creamy Almond Butter No Salt 340 grams05165109345316DEC14 thru 11MAY15
MaraNatha Crunchy Almond Butter No Salt 340 grams05165109346016DEC14 thru 14MAY15
MaraNatha Creamy Almond Butter 737 grams05165109286908DEC14 thru 03JUL15
Kroger No Stir Creamy Almond Butter 12 oz.01111079121411DEC14 thru 05JUL15
Safeway Open Nature Almond Butter 12 oz.07989311374611DEC14 thru 03JUL15
Trader Joe's Crunchy Raw Almond Butter 16 oz.0091989028DEC14 thru 18JUN15
Trader Joe's Creamy Raw Almond Butter 16 oz.0056995827DEC14 thru 18JUL15
Whole Foods 365 Creamy Roasted Almond Butter 16 oz.09948240657823DEC14 thru 24DEC14
Whole Foods 365 Crunchy Roasted Almond Butter 16 oz.09948240656124DEC14 thru 26DEC14
Whole Foods 365 Organic Creamy Roasted Almond Butter 16 oz.09948240596023DEC14

What Do Consumers Need To Do? 

Consumer should check their homes for the recalled products and should not eat them. Even if some of the product has been eaten and no one has become ill, the rest of the product should be thrown away in the trash.

Consumers do not need to return the product to the store where it was purchased. Instead, consumers are urged to throw away the recalled product and its container. Please contact the company at 1-800-937-7008 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. CST (Central Savings Time) for a replacement or refund, and with general inquiries.

There are several safe food handling and preparation measures people can take in general to prevent Salmonella. At home, wash hands, utensils, and surfaces with hot, soapy water before and after handling food; keep raw meat, poultry, and seafood separate from fresh produce and other ready-to-eat foods; cook foods to the proper temperature; and refrigerate perishable foods promptly.

Who Should be Contacted? 

People who think they might have become ill from eating possibly contaminated almond or peanut butter products should talk to their health care providers. Contact your healthcare provider if you have diarrhea that lasts for more than 3 days, or is accompanied by high fever, blood in the stool, or so much vomiting that you cannot keep liquids down and you pass very little urine.

The FDA encourages consumers with questions about food safety to call 1-888-SAFEFOOD or consult the fda.gov website: www.fda.gov .


The information in this release reflects the FDA’s best efforts to communicate what it has learned from the manufacturer and the state and local public health agencies involved in the investigation. The agency will update this page as more information becomes available.

For more information: 

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