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MDH sambar masala fails US food test; taken off the shelves by USFDA

FE Online

The US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has found salmonella bacteria in at least three lots of MSH’s sambhar masala, following which the products were recalled from the country earlier this week, The Indian Express reported citing an official release by the regulator.  The recalled lots (codes: 47,48 and 107) were manufactured by R-Pure Agro Specialities, sold by ‘House of Spices’ (India) and distributed in the retail stores of northern California. The directors on the board of R-Pure are the same as MDH, The Indian Express also reported citing the data on the website of corporate affairs ministry.

“This product was tested by FDA through a certified laboratory to be positive for salmonella,” USFDA said in an official release. “The recall was initiated after it was discovered by the FDA that the salmonella contaminated products were distributed,” the report also said. There is no mention in the statement by the regulator about the recall being voluntary.

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What is salmonella bacteria?

Salmonellosis is a common food-borne disease which is caused by the bacteria called salmonella. The symptoms of the illness include diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever. Even as most of the patients recover without any need of hospital care, some require hospitalisation, USFDA also said in the statement. The people with weak immune system including old and infants are more likely to develop a severe illness, the statement added.

Meanwhile, the labels on Patanjali's two sharbat products, earmarked to be sold within India, were found to be having "additional medicinal and dietary market claims" as compared to the ones on bottles set aside for export to America, according to a recent report released by the US health regulator. The report also said that the "firm has separate production and packaging areas for exported and domestic products".