UNFI is recalling of an unknown volume of organic flour because government test results showed the potential for contamination with E. coli O157:H7.
The company reported distributing the implicated 5-pound bags of flour nationwide. UNFI did not report what company milled the flour.
Consumers who have purchased 5-pound packages of “Wild Harvest Organic All-Purpose Flour, Unbleached” are urged to discard it if it has a Code of AA BEST IF USED BY 010820 CC 15:58 and UPC Code 711535509158, according to the company’s notice posted by the Food and Drug Administration.
If consumers have Wild Harvest organic flour that is not in its original packaging, they should throw it out. Any containers used to hold the recalled flour should be throughly washed.
Any consumers concerned about an illness should contact a physician.
“To date, UNFI has not received any direct consumer reports of confirmed illnesses related to this product,” according to the recall notice.
About E. coli inffections
Anyone who has eaten any of the implicated product and developed symptoms of E. coli infection should seek medical attention and tell their doctor about their possible exposure to the bacteria. Specific tests are required to diagnose the infections, which can mimic other illnesses.
The symptoms of E. coli infections vary for each person but often include severe stomach cramps and diarrhea, which is often bloody. Some patients may also have a fever. Most patients recover within five to seven days. Others can develop severe or life-threatening symptoms and complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
About 5 to 10 percent of those diagnosed with E. coli infections develop a potentially life-threatening kidney failure complication, known as a hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Symptoms of HUS include fever, abdominal pain, feeling very tired, decreased frequency of urination, small unexplained bruises or bleeding, and pallor.
Many people with HUS recover within a few weeks, but some suffer permanent injuries or death. This condition can occur among people of any age but is most common in children younger than five years old because of their immature immune systems, older adults because of deteriorating immune systems, and people with compromised immune systems such as cancer patients.
People who experience HUS symptoms should immediately seek emergency medical care. People with HUS will likely be hospitalized because the condition can cause other serious and ongoing problems such as hypertension, chronic kidney disease, brain damage, and neurologic problems.
(To sign up for a free subscription to Food Safety News, click here.)