E. Coli Concern Causes Major Flour Recall

"As a leading provider of flour for 150 years, we felt it was important to not only recall the product and replace it for consumers if there was any doubt, but also to take this opportunity to remind our consumers how to safely handle flour," said Liz Nordlie, president of General Mills Baking division.

General Mills announced May 31 it is working with health officials to investigate an ongoing multistate outbreak of E. coli O121 that may be potentially linked to Gold Medal flour, Wondra flour, and Signature Kitchens flour that is sold in Safeway, Albertsons, Jewel, Shaws, Vons, United, Randalls, and Acme stores and has commenced a voluntary recall, even though E. coli O121 so far has not been found in any General Mills flour products or in the flour manufacturing facility, nor has the company been contacted directly by any consumer reporting confirmed illnesses related to the products.

Both General Mills and the FDA posted announcements of the recall that said state and federal authorities are researching 38 occurrences of illness in 20 states related to E. coli O121 between Dec. 21, 2015, and May 3, 2016.

"While attempting to track the cause of the illness, CDC found that approximately half of the individuals reported making something homemade with flour at some point prior to becoming ill. Some reported using a General Mills brand of flour," their announcements said. "Based on the information that has been shared with General Mills, some of the ill consumers may have also consumed raw dough or batter. Consumers are reminded to not consume any raw products made with flour. Flour is an ingredient that comes from milling wheat, something grown outdoors that carries with it risks of bacteria which are rendered harmless by baking, frying, or boiling. Consumers are reminded to wash their hands, work surfaces, and utensils thoroughly after contact with raw dough products or flour and to never eat raw dough or batter."

"As a leading provider of flour for 150 years, we felt it was important to not only recall the product and replace it for consumers if there was any doubt, but also to take this opportunity to remind our consumers how to safely handle flour," said Liz Nordlie, president of General Mills Baking division.

To read the announcement and learn more about E. coli O121 and the flour brands that have been recalled, visit www.generalmills.com/flour.

The recall includes 6 SKUs (stock keeping units or UPC codes) of Gold Medal Flour, 2 SKUs of Signature Kitchens Flour, and 1 SKU of Gold Medal Wondra flour.

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