FDA finds imported spices contaminated, urge buyers to proceed with caution
POSTED: Friday, November 1, 2013 - 5:51pm
UPDATED: Friday, November 1, 2013 - 6:01pm
Tyler , TX (KETK) — The Federal Drug Administration says 7% of imported spices over the last 3 years were contaminated with salmonella.
To make matters worse,12% of imported spices were found to be contaminated by rodent hair, feces, and insects.
Brenda Elrod, the Northeast Environmental Health Director, said "We know that spices come from the environment. things are in the environment that contaminate food and other items. So the FDA. has been looking at the sources of our spices to see if in fact they are contaminated".
The spice testing began in 2007, and more than 80 different types of salmonella were detected.
These spices were imported from India, Mexico, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Elrod said, "Salmonella can be in the product and then you consume it, and then depending on how well you are, it may infect you and you get sick".
Currently the FDA. is looking for ways to improve the system.
They believe this begins with better storage facilities and safe transporting on a global scale. Elrod mentioned it was a matter of, "Just following that chain from the farm to the fork".
However the FDA. is not trying to completely sway consumers from using spices, but rather beware of some helpful tips.
Fully cook the food and spices before consumption, and always tell local health officials about any questionable products.
If you feel you may have salmonella poisoning, contact your doctor.