Flour, the main baking ingredient manufactured by General Mills has been recalled due to contamination of potentially deadly E.coli microbe. General Mills, DES MOINES, Iowa in the United States is one of the biggest flour manufacturers in the nation.
The recall has prompted the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to warn consumers not to eat raw cookie dough or batter. The contaminated flour has caused a dozen of illnesses in 21 states.
‘The Food and Drug Administration has warned consumers not to eat raw cookie dough or batter following the recall of General Mills flour contaminated with E-coli.’
Roughly 45 million pounds of General Mills flour has been recalled. Consumers are wondering how did the fecal bacteria get into the flour.
The FDA stated that the flour was responsible for making people sick was produced between November 2015 and February 2016. All the contaminated flour that has been impacted by the recall was produced by a single facility in Kansas City.
Officials have pinned down two different infection causing E-coli strains in the contaminated flour. Health officials are investigating how the deadly E-coli bacteria found its way into the flour.
E-Coli bacteria begins its life in the intestines of an infected animal and is shed through feces. Poor hygiene such as unwashed hands can contribute to the spread of E-coli bacteria. It is unknown whether improper hand washing may have been the cause of flour recall.
Flour is a raw agricultural product made by grinding when cultivated in open fields. It is not treated with heat, radiation or any other process to eradicate the potentially harmful bacteria.
In the 21 US states, a total of 46 people have fallen sick due to the contaminated flour. E-coli mimics the symptoms of other intestinal illness, and it often goes undiagnosed. Some of the most common symptoms of E-coli are vomiting, stomach pain and diarrhea.
In most of the cases, the infected individuals get better in a week and without treatment. However, in severe cases, infected individuals can develop more extreme symptoms including kidney failure and even death.
Out of the 46 infected individuals, 13 have required hospitalization, and one has suffered from kidney failure. The FDA has urged consumers to check their pantries to ensure that they are not using General Mills flour.