Protein bar recall affects Massachusetts consumers

Nearly 40,000 people annually fall ill after eating food contaminated with salmonella.Unsafe food products can cause widespread illness. This makes proper food manufacturing and handling of vital importance.

A protein bar is among the most recent of products given warnings by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The bars were sold in numerous states, including Massachusetts. According to the FDA, ProtiDiet High Protein Chocolate Dream bars may have been contaminated with salmonella, and should not be consumed. The bars have since been recalled by the manufacturer. Fortunately, no illnesses have yet been reported due to the tainted bars. Consumers experiencing symptoms of salmonellosis after ingesting one of the bars are advised to seek medical help.

Salmonellosis is a serious infection that could result in severe illness. Foods commonly containing the salmonella bacteria include raw meats and raw eggs. However, any food can become contaminated with salmonella through improper food handling. Symptoms of salmonellosis develop 12 to 72 hours after consuming the tainted food and include vomiting and diarrhea. A laboratory culture can determine whether these symptoms are caused by Salmonellosis or by a different illness. While Salmonellosis usually goes away on its own after five to seven days, it can cause severe dehydration. In some cases, the bacteria spreads beyond the site of the infection, requiring antibiotics. The most severe cases of Salmonellosis usually occur in infants, the elderly or people with compromised immune systems.

When a person contracts salmonellosis, they may be able to recover for their medical expenses and pain and suffering through a products liability lawsuit. Product liability laws protect consumers by holding sellers and manufacturers of defective products responsible for the harms those products cause. A personal injury attorney may be able to advise a consumer who believes they may have been injured or made ill due to a defective product.

Food safety is of the utmost importance, both for the persons consuming the food as well as those who manufacture or prepare it. Everyone deserves to be protected from food poisoning.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “FDA issues salmonella warning for ProtiDiet protein bars,” Monte Morin, March 18, 2013