for additional details, please see "Listeria positive prompts walnut recall"
Two days after a St. Louis company voluntarily recalled shelled walnuts because of possible listeria contamination, two more companies recalled their walnuts, and one of them named Golden State Food LLC as the supplier.
No illnesses have been reported in connection to the walnuts, according to May 23 recall notices from the Belleville Farmer’s Market, Belleville, Ill., and Sun Tree LLC, Phoenix. A spokesman at the Belleville business said the walnuts were from Sherman Produce, St. Louis.
Sherman Produce recalled 241 cases of walnuts May 21, some of them in Schnucks branded packages. No illnesses have been reported in relation to those walnuts, either, according to the recall notice.
All three recall notices said a random sample that the Food and Drug Adminstration collected returned a positive result for listeria monocytogenes. The Sherman Produce recall says the sample was collected “at the facility” while the other two recalls say FDA collected samples “from a supplier.”
A spokesman for Sun Tree confirmed May 27 that the company had sourced walnuts from Golden State Food LLC, Orosi, Calif. Sun Tree’s recall involves 46 cases, each with two dozen 12-ounce bags of shelled walnuts.
“Even though third party lab testing of product packed did not reveal any harmful pathogen, in cooperating with FDA and for care of our customers we are participating in this voluntary recall,” according to the Sun Tree recall notice.
The chief executive officer of Golden State Food LLC, Chris Yu, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
A spokesman with the Food and Drug Administration said the agency “cannot release the name of a firm’s supplier as such information constitutes commercial confidential information.”
“The firm (Sun Tree) has volunteered the name of its supplier. FDA has only posted the firm’s release, per the note at the top of the (recall) page,” said Noah Bartolucci, FDA spokesman.
“FDA can neither confirm nor deny the existence of ongoing investigations,” Bartolucci said when asked whether Golden State Food’s facilities are part of its investigation into the walnut recalls.
Another recall — of curry chicken salad — initiated May 3 by Schnucks also implicates walnuts from an “outside supplier” and says FDA is investigating the situation.
“The problem was discovered when routine product sampling by (USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service) personnel tested positive for listeria monocytogenes on April 28,” according to the Schnuck’s recall notice.
“This product was held by the firm and did not enter commerce. Further investigative sampling by the company later determined bulk walnuts from an outside supplier, an ingredient used in the product, may have been contaminated with the pathogen. FSIS and the company have received no reports of illnesses associated with consumption of these products. FSIS is working in partnership with the Food and Drug Administration to further investigate the source of the contamination.”