Salmonella outbreaks

Kellogg cereal linked to Salmonella outbreaks across the US

By Douglas Yu

- Last updated on GMT

Pic: ©GettyImages/Bet_Noire
Pic: ©GettyImages/Bet_Noire
Kellogg has recalled Honey Smacks after the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) found the cereal product is linked to Salmonella outbreaks in 31 US states, leading to 24 people being hospitalized.

The recalled products include 23-ounce Honey Smacks with a UPC code of 3800014810 and a 15.3-ounce variety that has a UPC code of 3800039103. The latter also has limited distribution in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, the Caribbean, Guam, Tahiti and Saipan.

According to the CDC, consumption of products contaminated with Salmonella may produce serious and sometimes fatal infections among young children, frail or elderly people and others with weakened immune systems.

“Healthy individuals infected with Salmonella can experience fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain,”​ it added. “The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most persons recover without a treatment.

“In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illness.”

More potentially affected consumers

The CDC said 73 people have so far been infected with the outbreak strain and 24 have been hospitalized.

“Illness started on March 3, 2018, to May 28, 2018. Ill people range in age from less than one year to 87, with a median age of 58. 65% are female… no deaths have been reported,”​ it noted.

However, the CDC added illnesses that occurred after May 22, 2018, might not yet be reported due to the time it takes for a person to fall ill and the case reported.

The government agency noted it takes an average of two to four weeks for the disease to be reported.

Kellogg is asking consumers to discard purchased boxes of Honey Smacks, for which it will offer a full refund.

The cereal maker has launched an investigation into the outbreak.

“The quality and safety of our foods is our top priority. We are taking steps to determine what happened and ensure it does not happen again,”​ said Kellogg.

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