You might want to check the kitchen cabinet for a peanut butter substitute that may be linked to at least four cases of E. coli in our state and 12 cases across the country. The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) has already released a statement recommending that consumers avoid eating the SoyNut Butter Co.’s I.M. Healthy Original Creamy SoyNut Butter. The company has voluntarily recalled the product with the Best By date of 08-30-18 or 08-31-18.
Arizona health officials are investigating four cases of E. coli infections in children under 5 years old that likely came from eating soynut butter-containing products from The SoyNut Butter Co.
The cases reported in Maricopa and Coconino counties have been linked to day-care facilities, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services. All four children in Arizona that were sickened had to be hospitalized but have since recovered.
KJZZ Radio quoted Dr. Cara Christ, director of Arizona DHS, as saying the department is working quickly to warn child-care facilities if they carry this brand of soynut butter.
“We did as a department did send out a note to all licensed child-care facilities because we know this manufacturer distributes. But it’s never a bad idea for parents to confirm that their children will not be eating this. It just adds one more levels of checks,” Christ said.
As ADHS continues to work to determine if the soynut butter is the cause of the E. col cases, Marie Peoples, chief health officer for the Coconino County Public Health Services District, warned – “Illness from E. coli can be very serious especially for vulnerable people such as pregnant women, young children, older adults, and people with immune systems compromised by disease. It’s important that everyone take appropriate precautions to protect against foodborne illness by thorough hand washing with soap and water prior to food preparation or consumption.”
The Arizona Daily Sun added that the E. coli cases in our state are “part of a large multi-state investigation covering 12 cases in five states.” The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recently tweeted the warning below.
We will continue to follow this story and bring you any new developments as they become available. Sharing important health stories that affect the people of our state is another way we are working toward our long-term goal of one day making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!