Kellogg's Issues Recall Over Their Honey Smacks Cereal

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Attention, cereal eaters! The Centers for Disease Control has issued a recall for Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal, due to an outbreak of salmonella linked to the sweet puffed wheat breakfast cereal. This isn't just a precaution, either. 73 people in 31 states have already fallen ill. No deaths have been reported yet, but 24 of those 73 people had to be hospitalized.

Just before the agency announced the outbreak, Kellogg's announced a recall of its own. The company recalled 15.3-ounce and 23-ounce packages with a best if used by date of June 14, 2018 - June 14, 2019. However, the CDC has expanded on that recall. The agency is warning consumers not to eat any Kellogg's Honey Smacks cereal, and to discard it if they have it in their pantry. The CDC's recall covers all Honey Smacks products that may be on shelves, because they believe that boxes with an earlier use by date could also be contaminated.

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New York has the highest number of reported cases of salmonella poisoning with seven, and California, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania have each reported five cases. The other 27 states involved in the outbreak have each reported between 1 - 4 cases.

Honey Smacks was identified as the likely culprit through interviews. After the initial outbreak, 39 patients were interviewed as part of the investigation. 30 of them reported eating cold cereal before they became ill, and 14 of those specifically reported eating Honey Smacks. The earliest reported symptoms of the outbreak started on March 3. Symptoms of salmonella include fever, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Symptoms usually start between 12 - 72 hours after exposure, and most people recover in 4 - 7 days.

After being contacted by the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration, Kellogg's launched an internal investigation into the third-party manufacturer that makes the cereal. The FDA said in a statement that they have initiated an inspection of the facility where Honey Smacks cereal is made, and that they're working closely with Kellogg's to collect evidence and information in an effort to identify the source of the contamination.

Honey Smacks cereal is sold by retailers all over the U.S., including Guam and Saipan. Outside of the U.S., the cereal was distributed to and sold in Aruba, Curaçao, St. Maarten, the Bahamas, Barbados, Tortola, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, Panama, and Tahiti. Retailers have been told to remove all Honey Smacks cereal from the shelves and not to sell it, and the CDC and FDA are urging consumers to throw away or return any unused cereal for a refund.

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