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Questions and Answers About the Nestlé Toll House Cookie Dough Recall
June 22, 2009
- Why are FDA and CDC warning the public not to eat Nestlé Toll House Cookie Dough?
- Are Nestlé cookie dough products being recalled?
- Does the recall apply to Nestlé Chocolate Chip Morsels or any other types of Nestlé products?
- How many people are sick?
- What is E. coli O157:H7?
- What should consumers do with Nestlé cookie dough products they have on hand?
- What should someone do if they have recently eaten a recalled Nestlé product?
- What is FDA doing in its investigation?
- Should consumers eat uncooked cookie dough?
The FDA/CDC warning is based on investigations by CDC and state and local health agencies of an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections beginning in March. The latest information from those investigations indicates the illnesses are associated with Nestlé Toll House cookie dough products eaten raw. As a result, FDA and CDC are warning consumers not to eat any variety of Nestlé Toll House cookie dough products until further notice.
Yes. As a precaution, Nestlé USA, the manufacturer of Toll House cookie dough, is voluntarily recalling all of its Nestlé Toll House refrigerated cookie dough products, which include several flavors, sizes and container types. A complete list of the recalled Nestlé products is available at this link to the firm's website: http://www.nestleusa.com/PubNews/PressReleaseLibraryDetails.aspx?id=133CC131-A79F-4E84-9C43-C9F99FE5BC99. Consumers with additional questions about recalled products can contact Nestlé USA at 800-559-5025.
No. The recall applies only to the specified Nestlé Toll House refrigerated cookie dough products.
As of June 22, 71 illnesses in 30 states have been reported to CDC as part of the outbreak; 28 individuals have been hospitalized, seven with a form of kidney failure associated with the infection called Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). For the most up to date numbers, see the CDC website.
E. coli O157:H7 is a bacterium that can cause serious foodborne illness in a person who eats a food item contaminated with it. Symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infection include severe and often bloody diarrhea, abdominal pain and vomiting. Usually, little or no fever is present. Onset of illness can occur anytime between one to eight days after eating a contaminated food product. Most healthy adults recover within a week. Young children and the elderly are at higher risk for developing Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS) as a result of the infection. HUS can lead to serious kidney damage and death.
Anyone who has any Nestlé cookie dough product in his or her home freezer, refrigerator or elsewhere should throw out the product immediately. Individuals should wash their hands thoroughly after handling the product. The product should not be baked, eaten raw, or handled unnecessarily.
Individuals who have recently eaten a Nestlé Toll House cookie dough product and are experiencing any symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infection (see above) should contact their doctor or health care provider immediately, or go to a hospital emergency room.
FDA is working with Nestlé USA to ensure suspect products are removed from the supply chain and retail shelves. FDA personnel also are inspecting the producing facility, including examining records and production and safety procedures to determine how the problem occurred and how it can be prevented in the future.
Nobody should eat any raw food products that are intended for cooking or baking before consumption. Consumers should also use safe food-handling practices when preparing such products, including following package directions for cooking at proper temperatures and for specified times. Hands, work surfaces, and utensils should be washed thoroughly after contact with raw products. Products requiring refrigeration should be chilled promptly after purchase or use. More information on safe food handling practices is available at FDA's food webpage for http://www.fda.gov/Food/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/ucm109899.htm.