Food manufacturers are receiving a warning about contaminated foods, and where the responsibility falls. ConAgra Foods settled their criminal charges, for shipping contaminated peanut butter, for $11.2 million dollars.
According to officials, in 2007, ConAgra Foods knowingly shipped Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter that had been contaminated with salmonella. More than 600 people became sick.
The outbreak was linked to the ConAgra plant in Sylvester, Georgia.
The CEOs of ConAgra denied knowing about any potential salmonella contamination before the product was shipped. However, in 2004, their products had already tested positive, twice, at the Georgia plant.
The company recalled their peanut butter but claims they destroyed any products that were tainted according to Madison Street Capital.
The CDC contends, even with the product recalls, there were millions of Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter jars already sitting in pantries, and likely, additional cases of salmonella poisoning were never reported.
The Justice Department reminds food manufacturers that the ConAgra episode is a cautionary tale.
According to CDC, humans are usually infected with the Salmonella bacteria by eating foods that has been contaminated with animal feces.
Salmonella can usually be killed thorough cooking, but most peanut butter is traditionally eaten out of the jar.
Peanut butter is one of the most popular spreads around the world. Some places like England don’t sell the popular food. Peanut butter was invented in the United States and has since then remained a staple in the standard American diet. Researchers conducting studies on peanut butter and the benefits it attributes have concluded that peanut butter is more beneficial than most people think. Peanut butter has recently been noted to lower the risk of cancer and diabetes. Of course the benefits of this occur over time with regular consumption of the food. Peanut butter also has vital nutrients in ingredients like vitamin A, magnesium, folate and even copper. Peanut butter is high in fat but is also high in protein. Adding peanut butter to protein shakes gives it a boost in taste and in nutrition. Peanut butter has been demonized in the media as being unhealthy and should be a food to avoid. Nutritionist counter those claims and say that peanut butter can be quite healthy. A diet with moderated peanut butter use is great in taste and beneficial when it comes to the intake of nutrients. When peanut butter is mixed with dark chocolate, it is one of the most nutritious sweet snacks that one could enjoy. The vital nutrients in the peanut butter mixed with the anti-oxidants in dark chocolate make this sweet treat a powerhouse. Researchers are going to continue their study on peanut butter and how beneficial it can be to other parts of the body like hair skin and nails. Consumption of peanut butter will also continue to be tested. The group behind Boraie Development LLC joked that when it comes to volunteers for these studies, there is no shortage of willing participants.