Texas health officials ordered a recall of every product ever shipped from a Plainview peanut processing plant since March 2005 after inspectors discovered contamination.
Inspectors found dead rodents, rodent excrement and bird feathers in a crawl space above a food production area at the Peanut Corp. of America’s Plainview plant, according to authorities from the Texas Department of State Health Services.
The plant’s air handling system was not completely sealed and was pulling debris from the infested crawl space onto exposed food products in production areas.
Most of the products processed at the plant were shipped to other food manufacturers, who used the items as ingredients.
The plant, which makes dry roasted peanuts, peanut meal and granulated peanuts, had been voluntarily closed after laboratory tests of sample products indicated the possible presence of salmonella in some products.
The plant is one of three owned by Peanut Corp. of America, which is based in Lynchburg, Va.
The company’s plant in Blakely, Ga., has been linked to a salmonella outbreak that has sickened some 600 people and may be linked to nine deaths. More than 1,900 items have been recalled.
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