Chocolate covered pretzels and other snacks with long shelf lives are being recalled from hundreds of stores by at least six grocery chains across a dozen states because of possible Salmonella contamination,

The snacks — some in party trays themed for the football playoff season — were produced by Palmer Candy Co. using an ingredient that included powdered milk from Valley Milk Products LLC. Dozens of food companies have recalled products made with the powdered milk, which was recalled after federal officials found Salmonella problems at the milk plant in Strasburg, VA.

Grocery chains recalling the chocolate covered shacks, some packaged under the Palmer brand and some packaged in unbranded containers, include HyVee,chocolae covered pretzels Albertsons, Vons, Pavilions, Tom Thumb and Lucky.

All of the recalls by the retailers this week referenced Valley Milk Products LLC. The products have best-by dates ranging from this month to July. Consequently, consumers are being urged to check their homes for the recalled products.

“Customers who purchased this product should dispose of it or return it to their local Hy-Vee store for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact Hy-Vee Customer Care representatives 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 800-772-4098,” according to the Hy-Vee recall notice, which is posted on the Food and Drug Administration’s website.

Hy-Vee operates more than 240 stores in eight states and is recalling the snacks from all its stores in Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

To see the list of products recalled by Hy-Vee, click here.

“The product comes in a plastic container with a clear lid. The sell-by date range for all items is between Jan. 26 and Feb. 23, 2017. The sell-by date can be found at the top of the product label,” according to the Hy-Vee recall notice.

Albertsons and Tom Thumb stores in three states, Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas, are recalling the snacks according to a news release. “The products are sold in the bakery area and packaged in clear, clamshell containers affixed with a scale label,” according to the news release about the Albertsons and Tom Thumb recalls in the three states.

To see the list of products recalled in Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas, click here.

“The recalled products have been removed from sale. Customers are asked to check their cupboards and refrigerators for these products. The products should be discarded or returned for a refund. Customers who have questions about the recall can contact Albertsons and Tom Thumb anytime at 877-723-3929.”

In a separate news release, Albertsons recalled assorted candy platters that contained the snack products and were distributed to stores in Southern California. The four retail banners involved in the Southern California recall are: Albertsons, Vons, Pavilions and Lucky.

“The Assorted Candy Platter is 32 ounces and has a UPC Code Number of 0041144 078586, which can be found on the scale label,” according to the news release from Albertsons. “The product is sold in the bakery area and is packaged in a clear, clamshell container affixed with a scale label. The recall includes packages marked with Sell Thru dates up to and including 7.10.17 (July 10, 2017). The Sell Thru date is printed on the scale label.”

Anyone who has eaten any of the recalled products and developed symptoms of Salmonella infection should seek medical attention and tell their doctors about the possible exposure to the pathogen.

Food contaminated with Salmonella may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Young children, pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems may contract serious and sometimes deadly infections.

Healthy people may experience short-term symptoms such as fever, headache, vomiting, nausea, abdominal cramps and diarrhea. Long-term complications may include severe arthritis.

Related recalls
At the request of the FDA, armed U.S. Marshals raided the Valley Milk plant in Strasburg, VA, on Nov. 30 and seized 4 million pounds of powdered milk and powdered buttermilk valued at almost $4 million.

On Dec. 9 Valley Milk Products recalled a separate 3.1 million pounds of powdered milk products produced and sold in the period from Dec. 5, 2015, through July 10, 2016.

While the FDA has access to company records showing who bought the recalled powdered milk, and when, it cannot publish those details because of a federal law protecting “confidential corporate information.”

In a document filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia the FDA reported environmental swabs collected at the production facility returned positive results for Salmonella.

Inspectors also found internal records at Valley Milk that showed the company itself had found Salmonella in the facility and in finished products.

Close to 20 other companies’ have similarly named potentially contaminated powdered milk from Valley Milk Products LLC of Strasburg, VA, as the reason for their recalls of products as varied as pudding mix, potato chips, frozen cream puffs and macaroni and cheese.

For additional details on other recalls related to the Valley Milk Products problems with Salmonella, please see:

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