July 5, 2016 — General Mills has expanded a recall for flour after four more illnesses were reported.
The company is expanded its recall of Gold Medal, Wondra, and Signature Kitchens flour to include flour made earlier in the fall that may still be in consumers’ pantries. Click here for a specific list of recalled flour products.
On July 1, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported a total of 42 cases in 21 states, including 11 people who were hospitalized.
Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O121 was discovered in samples of General Mills flour collected from the homes of sick people in Arizona, Colorado, and Oklahoma. The most recent illness started on June 8. Indiana was added to the list of states reporting illnesses.
The FDA is warning consumers not to eat any raw products made with flour — including cake batter, cookie dough, pizza crusts, and more. E. coli is killed by baking, frying, sautéing, or boiling.
Flour is milled from grain that comes straight from the fields and is not heat-treated before it is sold. E. coli is found in cow manure and bird droppings that can easily contaminate grain. The symptoms of infection may include:
- Abdominal cramping
- Sudden, severe watery diarrhea (may be bloody)
- Loss of appetite
- Nausea, vomiting
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