The Food and Drug Administration has joined the investigation into a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Virchow that has been linked to Raw Meal brand powdered organic shake mixes distributed by Garden of Life LLC. “The epidemiological and laboratory evidence available at this time suggests that Raw Meal Organic Shake & Meal Replacement products manufactured by Garden of Life LLC of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, are a likely source of this outbreak,” according to the FDA’s investigation report. outbreak-map-Raw-Meal Eleven people across nine states are confirmed in the outbreak, as of Feb. 1 when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last posted an update. Health officials in Utah and Oregon have reported finding Salmonella in open containers of Raw Meal products collected from outbreak victims’ homes. Test results on whether it matches the outbreak strain of Salmonella Virchow have not yet been reported. “Of 10 ill people interviewed, 10 reported consuming powdered supplements or meal replacement powders in the week before illness onset, and all 10 specifically reported consuming Garden of Life RAW Meal products,” the CDC reported. Garden of Life of Palm Beach Gardens, FL, recalled some Raw Meal mixes Jan. 29 and expanded that recall Feb. 12 to include more than 30 products. “These products have a long shelf life and may still be in people’s homes,” the CDC warns. “Consumers should not consume any of the recalled products manufactured by Garden of Life LLC. If they have any such products, they should dispose of them in the garbage. The recalled products were sold nationwide in retail stores and online. If you are unsure of your risk, ask your healthcare provider.” Raw Meal powdered mixes from Garden of Life Health officials recommend not eating any flavor of the product if it was purchased on or after Nov. 1, 2015. Additionally, Raw Meal products with a “Best Used by: 09/2017” date or later should not be consumed. When Garden of Life officials expanded the recall Feb. 12, they announced they had determined the cause of the contamination. “After extensive testing of the product and its ingredients, and working in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the manufacturer, suppliers and other third-party experts, we have now identified the likely source of Salmonella contamination to be organic moringa leaf powder from a supplier used only in Raw Meal,” according to the expanded recall notice. “Because other Garden of Life products containing Moringa use different suppliers, only Raw Meal is exposed.” Garden of Life will remove organic moringa powder from its Raw Meal products and expects new products to be available in stores and through online retailers within the next few weeks, according to a news release. In the meantime, federal and state health officials recommend anyone who has consumed Raw Meal products and then developed symptoms of Salmonella should consult with a doctor. Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps within 12 to 72 hours of exposure. The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most people recover without treatment. In some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that they need 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. Some people are at greater risk for foodborne illness. These susceptible groups include:

  • Pregnant women
  • Young children
  • Older adults
  • People whose immune systems are compromised
  • People who have decreased stomach acidity

Children are the most likely to contract salmonellosis. The rate of diagnosed infections in children less than 5 years old is higher than the rate in all other people. 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 people in the United States die each year with acute salmonellosis. The recall now includes the following products with lot numbers, UPC numbers, Sachet UPC numbers and expiration dates: •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate 10 CNT Tray: 47200200; 658010116114; 658010116107; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Full Size: 47215800; 658010115933; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Full Size: 47243600; 658010115933; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Half Size: 47198400; 658010116954; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Full Size: 47222300; 658010114141; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Full Size: 47248900; 658010114141; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Half Size: 47225700; 658010116961; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Half Size: 47198700; 658010116961; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Chai 10 CNT Tray: 47183200; 658010116428; 658010116435; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Chai Half Size: 47215400; 658010116947; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Chai Half Size: 47202000; 658010116947; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Full Size: 47200100; 658010116022; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Full Size: 47198600; 658010116022; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Half Size: 47198500; 658010116930; 8/1/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Full Size: 47200000; 658010115933; 8/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Half Size: 47243000; 658010116954; 8/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Chai Full Size: 47215600; 658010116046; 8/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Full Size: 47202100; 658010116022; 8/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Full Size: 47247700; 658010115933; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Half Size: 47247801; 658010116954; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Half Size: 47257001; 658010116954; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Full Size: 47246501; 658010114141; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Half Size: 47269900; 658010116961; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla 10 CNT Tray: 47275400; 658010116138; 658010116121; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Chai Full Size: 47247601; 658010116046; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Full Size: 47225602; 658010116022; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Half Size: 47273200; 658010116930; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Half Size: 47247900; 658010116930; 11/30/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Chocolate Full Size: 47256902; 658010115933; 12/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Full Size: 47257100; 658010116022; 12/31/2017 •RAW Organic Meal Vanilla Half Size: 47287600; 658010116930; 12/31/2017 (To sign up for a free subscription to Food Safety News, click here.)