Jan 15, 2009 10:39 AM
In the wake of a nationwide salmonella outbreak, cereal maker Kellogg has halted sales of its popular Keebler and Austin brand peanut butter crackers as a "precautionary measure" and is urging consumers not to eat the popular snacks. The move comes on the heels of word that contaminated peanut butter, which has reportedly sickened more than 430 people in 43 states, may be linked to two more deaths (in Idaho and Minnesota), bringing the total fatalities to five. (Two deaths in Virginia and one in Minnesota were confirmed earlier this week.)
The cereal giant, based in Battle Creek, Mich., said that there were no reported problems with the snacks but that it was taking the action after one of its suppliers, Peanut Corp. of America, announced a nationwide recall of its peanut butter made in a Georgia plant.
Among the snacks that Kellogg is asking stores to pull from shelves: Toasted Peanut Butter Sandwich Crackers, Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Crackers, Cheese and Peanut Butter Sandwich Crackers and Peanut Butter-Chocolate Sandwich Crackers.
The company said on its Web site that it was asking retailers to clear the products from their shelves and consumers not to eat them "until regulatory officials complete their investigation" of the outbreak. "We are taking these voluntary actions," Kellogg CEO David Mackay said in a statement, "out of an abundance of caution."
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