UPDATE – A salmonellosis outbreak linked to tempeh sold by an Asheville, N.C., company has grown by 5 cases, to 88, after a Rockville, Md., company issued a recall for imported “Tempeh Starter Yeast.” David Sweat, MPH, foodborne disease epidemiologist with the North Carolina Division of Public Health in Raleigh, told CIDRAP News today that, as of yesterday, his agency had recorded 76 confirmed, 6 probable, and 6 suspected cases in five states: 80 in North Carolina, 3 in Georgia, 3 in South Carolina, 1 in Tennessee, and 1 in Michigan. But all case-patients “were exposed in Asheville, N.C., as far as we can tell,” he said. The most recent illness-onset date was May 8, he said. The recalled starter yeast, imported from Indonesia, was distributed by Indonesianfoodmart.com nationwide and internationally through direct mail order, according to a May 22 company statement that was posted online by the FDA. The product comes in sealed, clear plastic packages in 30-, 50-, 250-, and 1,000-gram sizes, and the company has ceased distributing it. The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services found Salmonella in some of the product, the company statement said.
www.indonesianfoodmart.com of Rockville, MD, is recalling all packages of “Tempeh Starter Yeast” because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.
The recalled ” Tempeh Starter Yeast “and “Super Starter Yeast” were distributed nationwide and internationally through direct mail orders. The product was also distributed to the following areas: Australia, Canada, Slovenia, New Zealand, Brunei, Darussalam, Poland and Croatia.
The product comes in sealed, clear plastic packages marked with a small computer printed label. The following sizes were sold: 30gm, 50gm, 250 gm, and 1000 gm
Several illnesses have been reported to date that may be in connection with this problem.
The potential for contamination was noted after testing by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services revealed the presence of Salmonella in some of the product
Upon being notified of the risk by the FDA, the Indonesianfoodmart.com immediately discontinued their operations. Indonesianfoodmart.com did not manufacture the product which was imported from Indonesia.
The product should not be used. Consumers may securely wrap and return the product to the above address or discard it in a waste receptacle.