General Mills, creator is famous breakfast cereal Cheerios, announced a voluntary recall of some of its brands of flour due to a potential link to E. coli.
On May 31st, General Mills (NYSE: GIS) released a press conference stating that it is cooperating with health officials in a potential connection between their Gold Medal, Gold Medal Wondra, and Signature Kitchen brand flour and the bacteria known as E. coli 0121.
The brands are typically sold in Safeway, Albertsons, Jewel, Shaws, Vons, United, Randalls, and Acme stores across the country.
Between the months of December and May this year, state and Federal officials have investigated 38 cases of E. coli infections across 20 unnamed states. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) observed that approximately half of the individuals reporting illness had baked something using one of the aforementioned flour brands prior to their diagnosis. Consumers eating raw dough or batter were also reported to General Mills.
The press announcement also illustrated the necessity for proper care when using ingredients for baking; “. . .we felt it was important to not only recall the product and replace it for consumers if there was any doubt,” said Liz Nordlie, president of General Mills Baking division, “but also to take this opportunity to remind our consumers how to safely handle flour.”
Any consumers concerned for their own health is recommended by General Mills to contact a medical physician. Anyone diagnosed with E. coli is also strongly recommended to contact their state and local health authorities.
Consumers with any additional questions can access General Mills’ Q&A form through this link.
A full list of the recalled flour in question can be found at General Mills’ press release site.