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Peanut butter recall primer

Although there have been no reported illnesses or deaths in Florida associated with the outbreak of salmonella found in peanut butter and peanut paste, local stores aren't taking any chances.

Publix started pulling products off its shelves last week, followed by Sweetbay Supermarkets, Wal-Mart and Family Dollar. Here's what you need to know about the recall.

What's affected: Dozens of products — including snack cakes, cookies, crackers, ice cream and candy — have been recalled because they contain peanut butter or peanut paste produced at a Blakely, Ga., facility owned by the Peanut Corporation of America. The company doesn't sell directly to consumers, but its ingredients are used in snacks like Little Debbie peanut butter crackers, Luna energy bars and Famous Amos Peanut Butter cookies. The list seems to grow daily; see them all here: tinyurl.com/6t8dze.

Who's affected: The peanut-related products have been linked to outbreaks of salmonella, a sometimes fatal infection that can produce such symptoms as fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. The outbreak has sickened at least 470 people in 43 states. Six deaths have been linked to the outbreak.

Have a recalled item? Return it the store, or check each company's Web site for refund information. For more information, go to the Food and Drug Administration's site at tinyurl.com/6t8dze, the Peanut Corporation of America's site at www.peanutcorp.com; or tampabay.com's Whoa, Momma blog at blogs.tampabay.com/moms/

Sherry Robinson can be reached at robinson@sptimes.com or (727) 893-8305.

Peanut butter recall primer 01/20/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, January 21, 2009 6:56am]

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