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OMAHA, Neb. -- ConAgra Foods has voluntarily recalled all varieties of peanut butter under the Peter Pan Peanut Butter and Great Value labels carrying the product code 2111 on the lid, and said it is working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a link to the tainted products and its plant in Sylvester, Ga., where the peanut butter was made. So far, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has tentatively linked the product to almost 300 incidents of salmonella poisoning in 39 states.
"Although none of our extensive product tests have indicated the presence of salmonella, we are taking this precautionary measure because consumer health and safety is our top priority," said Chris Kircher, spokesperson for ConAgra Foods. "We are working closely with the FDA to better understand its concerns, and we will take whatever additional measures are needed to ensure the safety, quality, and wholesomeness of our products."
The Great Value brand peanut butter is made for Wal-Mart. ConAgra said there are other manufacturers of Great Value Peanut Butter that are not affected by this recall.
Since August, the salmonella outbreak has sickened 288 people in 39 states, according to health officials.
A report from the Associated Press said yesterday that about 20 percent of victims have been hospitalized but none has died. The largest number of cases were reported in New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee, and Missouri, the report said.
The FDA said it has sent investigators to ConAgra's processing plant in Sylvester, Ga., where the products are made to review records, collect product samples, and conduct tests for Salmonella.