Federal officials are again urging consumers to check their homes for recalled tahini products that are associated with an international outbreak of Salmonella infections. Product expiration dates initially reported by the recalling company were incorrect. Some of the tahini doesn’t expire until 2021.
In the United States, five people from three states had been confirmed infected as of Nov. 28, according to an outbreak announcement posted that day by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A day earlier, on Nov. 27, Achdut Ltd., an Ari’el, Israel, food company, recalled several brands of tahini products citing potential contamination with Salmonella Concord.
All of the recalled tahini was manufactured from April 7 through May 21 this year, according to the company’s recall notice posted on the Food and Drug Administratoin website. The brands named in the recall are Achva, Achdut, Baron’s, Soom, S&F, and Pepperwood.
Revisied recall information posted Dec. 11 by the FDA says the expiration date on the Baron’s branded tahini subject to the recall is a year later than originally reported by the company. The Baron’s brand tahini products do not expire until May 2021.
Achdut Ltd. distributed the recalled tahini products internationally. It was sold at retail locations and through mail orders.
In addition to the five confirmed Salmonella Concord infections in the United States, the recalled tahini has been linked to at least 40 illnesses in Israel and an undisclosed number of illnesses in Canada.
Although container sizes, brands, expiration dates and other label information counsumers can use to identify the recalled tahini are included in the recall notice, both the FDA and the CDC have reported some of the recalled products are not marked with such information.
“Some brands of tahini manufactured by Achdut Ltd. may lack specific dates or may have labels that are written in Hebrew,” the FDA update posted Dec. 11 says.
“Consumers who have purchased a tahini product and are uncertain of where the product was manufactured or cannot identify the brand by lot codes or expiration dates should discard the product or return the food to the store for a refund. More product information and pictures of the recalled product labels can be found in the firm’s recall announcement.”
The FDA also renewed its warnings to restaurants, retailers and other businesses that use tahini in their products. The agency urged such businesses to throw out any recalled tahini and any tahini products that cannot conclusively be identified as not being subject to the recall.
“Firms that may have used the recalled tahini (either repacked or used as an ingredient in a food without a kill step) should consider recalling their products. Recalls should be reported to your local FDA office. A list of recall coordinators can be found here,” according to the FDA’s update.
A sample of imported tahini collected by FDA at the point of import tested positive for Salmonella Concord. The tahini was Baron’s brand manufactured by Achdut Ltd. This manufacturer was placed on an FDA Import Alert, detaining additional product from the firm at the U.S. border until evidence is presented demonstrating that Salmonella is not present in the product.
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