Header graphic for print
Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

33 Sickened – Union International Food Company Pulls Salmonella Spices

California public health officials are warning people not to eat a dozen spices packaged at a Union City plant under the Lian How brand name.  A salmonella outbreak that has sickened 33 people in California and nine people in three other states caused the Union International Food Company to voluntarily recall of its pepper, paprika, curry, onion powder and other products. 

The state health department said Saturday that most of the people who got sick appeared to have been exposed to salmonella white eating at Asian restaurants that used the company’s white and black peppers.  Salmonella poisoning causes diarrhea and vomiting. It can be fatal in children and others with weakened immune systems.

I wondered what the FDA had to say about Salmonella and Spices –

"The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires emphasis on the principle of "clean" food, not "cleaned" food. One of the most serious consequences of failure to protect herbs and spices is contamination with excreta from rats, mice, birds, or other animals. Emphasis should be placed on harvesting, storing, handling, packing, and shipping under conditions which will prevent contamination."

  • Hi Salmonella Attorney!
    This blog is impressive. Just wanted to point out that all the spices that you have shown in your photograph are not the ‘Asian’ spices under recall. These spices are typical of those that are found in an South Asian – Indian sub-continent masala (spice) box – and do not form a part of the recall.
    As far as I have read, both the spices under recall and the restaurants detailed under recall alert are Asian (East Asian). While the 2 cuisines share some common spices, the latter are relatively different from the spice box that your image displays.
    Thanks!
    WOYP