Nuts and seeds seem to be prone to Salmonella contamination. This year alone peanuts, pistchios, sesame and sunflower seeds, and now potentially pecans have been recalled due to Salmonella contamination.
Today General Mills announced a voluntary recall of Nature Valley Granola Nut Clusters “Nut Lovers” (pictured right) due to potential Salmonella contamination believed to be from pecans in the product, reportsForbes.com.
The new product, a bag of bite-size granola clusters, is sold in stores and vending machines. General Mills ( GIS – news – people ) said pecans received from an unidentified supplier and used in the product are the source of the potential salmonella.
The recall only covers products with the following "best if used by" dates: March 7, 2010; March 8, 2010; March 9, 2010; March 10, 2010; and March 11, 2010.
The company said that no illnesses have been reported in connection with the product, and that no other types of Nature Valley products are being recalled.
Salmonella can cause fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In young children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems, it can cause more serious or even fatal infections.
A 1975 article in Applied Microbiology examined the survival of Salmonella in pecans during processing and storage conditions. The paper suggests that morphological differences in pecans will make some susceptible to cracking and water uptake during processing, and hence microbial contamination.
Know your supplier, and the steps they are taking to produce safe products.