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Amrita brand protein bars recalled because of Listeria risk

More protein bars are being recalled, this time from Amrita Health Foods, because they contain ingredients supplied by Hudson Valley Foods Inc., which found Listeria monocytogenes in its production facility.

The protein bars from Amrita Health Foods of Pleasantville, NY, have best-by dates well into 2018. They were distributed across the United States to retailers and to direct to consumers via online sales, according to the recall notice posted Wednesday on the Food and Drug Administration’s website.

“All affected distributors and retail website customers have been notified,” according to the recall notice, which covers nine different flavors of Amrita protein bars.

There is concern that consumers may have unused protein bars in their homes. The recalled bars were produced this year from April 24 through May 31. They can be identified by their UPC numbers listed below and their best-by dates, which range from April 24, 2018, through May 31, 2018.

The recalled flavors of Amrita protein bars and their UPC numbers are:

  • Amrita Chocolate Maca Bar, 60g (UPC 853009004056);
  • Amrita Dark Chocolate Quinoa, 60g (UPC 853009004438);
  • Amrita Sunflower Seed Butter, 60g (UPC 853009004414);
  • Amrita Chocolate Chip Coconut, 50g (UPC 853009004391);
  • Amrita Mango Coconut, 50g (UPC 853009004018);
  • Amrita Apricot Strawberry, 50g (UPC 853009004056);
  • Amrita Pineapple Chia, 50g (UPC 853009004025);
  • Amrita Apple Cinnamon, 50g (UPC 853009004049); and
  • Amrita Cranberry Raisin, 50g (UPC 853009004032).

“Amrita Foods was notified directly by Hudson Valley Farms and the FDA of the potential contamination and risk for illness,” according to the recall notice. “Amrita Health Foods immediately ceased production and distribution upon receiving this news…

“Consumers should not consume these products. Affected product may be returned to the place of purchase for an exchange. Consumers with questions may contact Amrita Health Foods at 888-728-7779.”

Advice to consumers; related recalls
Anyone who has eaten any of the recalled products and developed symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical attention and tell their doctors about the possible exposure. Additionally, anyone who has eaten the above products recently should monitor themselves for symptoms during the coming weeks because it can take up to nine weeks after exposure for symptoms to develop.

Healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headaches, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

A number of other products made with sunflower seeds and other ingredients from Hudson Valley Farms have been recalled in recent weeks in the United States and Canada.

Those recalled products include three brands of hummus — Marketside, Lantana and Fresh Foods Market — protein bars, oatmeal and trail mix with organic dates.

An FDA spokesman told Food Safety News in June that Hudson Valley Farms has stopped operations and will not restart without prior notice to FDA.

“The FDA is working with Hudson Valley Foods Inc. to facilitate their recall and remove potentially contaminated food from the marketplace. Additionally, the firm is working on corrective actions to remediate the situation and identify the source. We have no further information to share at this time,” said the FDA spokesman.

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