General Mills expands flour recall

General Mills expands flour recall
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General Mills has expanded its recall of flour linked to a multi-state outbreak of E. coli after four more illnesses were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The recall, which the company first issued on May 31, now includes leading brands of flour produced through Feb. 10. Affected products include Gold Medal Wondra, Gold Medal All Purpose Flour, Gold Medal Unbleached Flour and Signature Kitchens All Purpose Flour.

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CDC said a total of 46 people have been affected in 21 states, 13 people have been hospitalized and one person has developed a type of kidney failure.

General Mills said the illnesses reported to health officials continue to be connected with consumers reporting that they ate or handled uncooked dough or ate uncooked batter made with raw flour.

Since flour is made from wheat that is grown outdoors where bacteria is present, the company advises consumers to eat only flour that’s been cooked or baked, since the normal flour milling process does not remove bacteria.

“As a leader in flour production for 150 years, General Mills is committed to convening experts to work with government officials to learn more and create new protocols, if needed,” Jeff Harmening, the company’s president and CEO said in a statement. “Most importantly, we want all the avid home bakers out there to have peace of mind and know the most important thing they can do to keep safe is to not eat uncooked flour.”

The company said it does not know if this is an issue isolated to General Mills’s flour, or if this is an issue across the flour industry.