A distributor of MDH Masala has recalled at least three lots of the company’s sambhar masala from the shelves of US retail market after the United States’ food regulatory body tested its products to be positive for “Salmonella.”
In an official release, the US Food and Drug Authority stated, “This product was tested by FDA through a certified laboratory to be positive for salmonella,” adding that the recall was “initiated after it was discovered by the FDA that the salmonella contaminated products were distributed.”
However, the US FDA'S statement does not specify that the recall of the MDH products was voluntary. The salmonella contaminated products were distributed in northern California retail stores from which it was later withdrawn, the India Express reported.
Revealing the harmful effects of these products, the FDA’s official website said that the consumption of food contaminated with salmonella can cause salmonellosis, which one of the most common bacterial food-borne diseases like diarrhoea, abdominal cramps and fever.
"The symptoms of the disease are diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the contaminated product. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days," it said.
While most patients recuperate from salmonellosis often treatment, some may suffer severe diarrhoea requiring hospitalisation, FDA said, adding that in a worse case, patients may develop a high fever, aches, headaches, lethargy, rash, blood in the urine or stool and, in some cases, salmonellosis may become fatal.
“Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness,” it said.
The multiple lots that were withdrawn from the US market were manufactured by R-Pure Agro Specialities, sold by US-based supplier ‘House of Spices’ and distributed in northern California retail stores.
However, whether the contaminated MDH products manufactured by R-Pure for the US market have also been distributed in India has not yet been confirmed.
This is not the first time that the US FDA flagged off about the various health complications caused by salmonella contamination of MDH products. The regulator had detained imports of MDH spices in over 20 instances between 2016 and 2018 for the same reason.