When people mention the health risks associated with eating nuts, allergies may be what first comes to mind. Many parents are aware of how exposure to nut products can endanger children with nut allergies. Food manufacturers and sellers can be liable if a person has an allergic reaction because the product did not disclose that it contained nuts. However, there have also been several instances in the U.S. of food poisoning that is related to nuts being sold in stores. Though they are rarer than allergic reactions, the outbreaks can be harmful to those who consume the contaminated nuts.
Illinois Company Recalls Macadamia Nuts
NOW Health Group Inc. has voluntarily recalled packages of macadamia nuts because of potential salmonella contamination. The Illinois-based company discovered the contamination when testing one of its macadamia nut lots, some of which had already been packaged and sent to retailers. The recall applies to packages that are labeled “NOW Real Food Raw Macadamia Nuts” with a best by date of 01/2021. Symptoms from a salmonella infection can take six hours to six days to appear and usually include diarrhea, cramping, and fever. Severe cases may require hospitalization or antibiotics.
Though this case applies to macadamia nuts, past food poisoning cases have involved a variety of shelled and unshelled nuts:
- In 2000, 177 people were sickened because of a salmonella outbreak in almonds.
- In 2010, at least seven people became sick from eating hazelnuts that contained a strain of E. coli.
- In 2018, two tons of pistachios were recalled due to salmonella contamination.
Many nuts fall onto the ground before they are harvested, which can expose them to harmful bacteria in the soil. If not properly cleaned and treated, the nuts may still carry these contaminants when they reach store shelves. Removing the shell may not protect you from food poisoning because the bacteria from the shell can contaminate the meat when the nuts are being processed.
Contact an Illinois Food Poisoning Lawyer
Allergic reactions and food poisoning can have similar symptoms, but you are unlikely to have suddenly developed a nut allergy as an adult if you did not have one as a child. Once you have identified your reaction as food poisoning, you have the option of seeking compensation from the company that manufactured the contaminated product. An Illinois food poisoning attorney at Newland & Newland, LLP, will explain how you can prove that a manufacturer is liable and what you can expect to receive in a lawsuit. To schedule a consultation, call 847-840-8950.