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General Mills recalls flour due to salmonella, emphasizes it’s not a ‘ready to eat’ food

What is salmonella and how do you keep from getting it?

Salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses and 450 deaths in the U.S. every year, according to the CDC. The bacteria is typically transmitted through contaminated food, but some simple preventative measures can keep you from getting sick.
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Salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses and 450 deaths in the U.S. every year, according to the CDC. The bacteria is typically transmitted through contaminated food, but some simple preventative measures can keep you from getting sick.

General Mills is recalling five-pound bags of flour with a better if used by date of April 20, 2020 due to salmonella concerns.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the company said it has not received any reports of illness but is recalling the product in “an abundance of care.” Salmonella was found during samples of the Gold Medal Unbleached Flour.

Only bags with a better if used by date of April 20, 2020 are affect, all other bags are safe to consume.

“Food safety is our top priority, and though we have not had any confirmed illnesses, we are voluntarily recalling this specific lot of Gold Medal Unbleached Flour to prevent potential illnesses,” Jim Murphy, President of General Mills Meals and Baking Division, said in the statement. “This recall does not involve any other flour products, and we are continuing to educate consumers that flour is not a ‘ready to eat’ ingredient. Anything you make with flour must be cooked or baked before eating.”

Salmonella is killed by heat from baking, frying, sautéing or boiling products made with flour.

Salmonella, a type of bacteria, is one of the most common causes of food poisoning in the United States.

The Center for Disease Control estimates each year salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations, and 450 deaths. One million of the 1.2 million illnesses are caused by consuming contaminated food.

Symptoms of salmonella include diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps, and can last 4 to 7 days. These symptoms may appear anywhere from 12 to 72 hours after exposure to the bacteria.

The illness can be more serious for children younger than 5 years of age, adults older than 65 years of age, and people with weakened immune systems.

If you contract salmonella, drink fluids and rest. If your symptoms are severe or you are in one of the high risk groups, contact your doctor or go to the hospital. Salmonella can be diagnosed by your health care professional through a stool sample test.

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Belleville News-Democrat news editor Dana Rieck was selected as Editor and Publisher’s “25 Under 35 Newspaper Leaders” for 2018 and works with the Online News Association in St. Louis. She attended Colorado State University and grew up in Loveland, Colorado.
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