MINNEAPOLIS — General Mills on April 28 issued a voluntary national recall of 2-lb, 5-lb and 10-lb bags of its Gold Medal Unbleached and Bleached All Purpose Flour with a “better if used by” date of March 27, 2024, and March 28, 2024.
General Mills said the recall follows the recent discovery of the potential presence of Salmonella Infantis in 5-lb bags of the product.
The recall affects two date codes of Gold Medal Unbleached All Purpose Flour in the 5-lb and 10-lb bags and two date codes of Gold Medal Bleached All Purpose flour in the 2-lb and 5-lb bags.
“Guidance from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warn that consumers should refrain from consuming any raw products made with flour,” General Mills said. “Salmonella Infantis is killed by heat through baking, frying, sautéing or boiling products made with flour. All surfaces, hands and utensils should be properly cleaned after contact with flour or dough.”
The FDA has not said whether General Mills’ recall is linked to an earlier investigation into Salmonella that is suspected to have originated from a single unidentified flour source. Flour was the only common ingredient consumed by every patient sickened in the outbreak, according to the CDC. As of March 30, 11 people in 12 states had been reported as being infected with the Salmonella strain. No deaths have been reported.
It was a little less than four years ago that Gold Medal Unbleached All Purpose Flour was recalled twice — once due to the potential presence of E. coli O26, which also was discovered during sampling of the 5-lb bag product, and once after Salmonella was detected during the sampling of the product. Meanwhile, in 2016, General Mills was involved in a major recall that centered around its Gold Medal Flour and Gold Medal Wondra. Epidemiologic, laboratory and traceback evidence indicated that flour produced at a General Mills facility in Kansas City was the likely source of an outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), which the CDC said infected 63 people in 24 states. Seventeen people were hospitalized, and one person developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure, but no deaths were reported. The recall in 2016 affected 45 million lbs of flour.