Salmonella in organic sesame seeds, sold in Ireland, grown in Bolivia

In a stunning example of local, organic healthy-type food, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) today advised that a product recall is being undertaken on certain packets of sesame seed mixes supplied into the Irish retail market by Independent Irish Health Foods Ltd.

These seed mixes are being recalled due to the presence of Salmonella which presents a risk to consumers’ health. The issue was identified as part of a survey on ready-to-eat nuts and dried seeds. Consumers are being warned not to consume the affected products which are as follows:

Independent Irish Health Foods Ltd
Product Name: Organic Sesame Seeds, 250g, 500g packs
Organic Four Seed Mix, 250g, 500g packs
Best-before date: 11/03/2011 to 07/05/2011 inclusive
Country of Origin: Bolivia

These seeds have been distributed widely within the Republic of Ireland. Some packets clearly show the name Independent Irish Health Foods Ltd, other packs have been supplied to independent retailers (e.g. health stores) and this packaging states: "packed by Independent Irish Health Foods" on the front of the pack.

Prof Alan Reilly, chief executive, FSAI, said it is particularly concerning that this is the second time a Salmonella issue has been identified in relation to sesame seeds in less than a year. Food businesses marketing these products need to ensure that both hygiene and processing are of a standard to eliminate Salmonella from these ready-to-eat products.