Washington area consumers should not eat Pantry Pride canned mushrooms with the lot number DK113P1 because of possible contamination by botulin toxin, the Food and Drug Administration said yesterday. That toxin can cause botulism, a severe food poisoning that can result in death.
The suspect mushrooms have been removed from the shelves of the area's nine Pantry Pride supermarkets, all located in suburban Maryland, but cans sold prior to the voluntary removal still could be in consumers' hands, said an FDA representative. About 500 of the cans were delivered to those supermarkets, according to a Pantry Pride official.
No incidents of illness or death have been reported so far, according to the FDA.
Anyone with one of the mushroom cans carrying the DK113P1 lot number on the lid should return it to the store where it was purchased and receive a refund, said Bernard Lipskin, director of communications for the Pantry Pride chain.
The mushrooms were canned by Oxford Royal Mushrooms Products Inc. of Kelton, Pa., and sold in four-ounce cans in the Washington-Baltimore area and in the Richmond-Norfolk area under the brand name Pantry Pride. The mushrooms were sold in other parts of the country under the brand names Lady Lee or Kingston.
The recall was triggered by a Rockford, Ill., consumer who complained to his local health department that the "contents spewed out" and there was a "putrid odor" when a can of the mushrooms was opened. Laboratory tests made by FDA confirmed that those mushrooms were contaminated with botulin toxin. Such contamination can occur when the canned product hasn't been processed long enough or at temperatures high enough to kill the botulinus bacteria that produce the toxin.
Tom Bell, general manager of Oxford Royal, said the lot being recalled was processed April 13. Normally, Oxford puts its mushrooms through a 14-minute cooking and cooling cycle, Bell said. Temperature during processing reaches 268 degrees Fahrenheit, he said.
About 3,700 of the cans in the recall lot were destined to be sold in the 74 Pantry Pride stores located in areas including Washington-Baltimore, Richmond-Norfolk and parts of Delaware, said Lipskin.
Nationally, the recall involved an additional 61,700 cans that were to have been distributed in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Iowa, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas and Oklahoma.