June 20, 2009 in Business

Toll House cookie dough recalled

Jerry Hirsch Los Angeles Times

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Consumers with questions should contact Nestle Consumer Services at (800) 559-5025 or visit its Web site at www.verybestbaking.com.

There’s a toll to eating raw cookie dough.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told consumers Friday not to eat any varieties of prepackaged Nestle Toll House refrigerated cookie dough because the products could be contaminated with a potentially deadly form of E. coli.

Since March, at least 65 people from 28 states – including five in Washington – have gotten sick after eating the dough. Of those, 25 people were hospitalized and seven developed a severe complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome, which leads to kidney damage and lifetime health issues and is often responsible for E. coli illness deaths. So far, there are no documented deaths from the outbreak, according to the CDC.

Nestle, a Swiss food giant that runs its U.S. operations out of Glendale, Calif., has launched a voluntary recall of all varieties of Nestle Toll House refrigerated dough, including Cookie Bar Dough, Cookie Dough Tub, Cookie Dough Tube, Limited Edition Cookie Dough items, Seasonal Cookie Dough and Ultimates Cookie Bar Dough. The recall extends beyond chocolate-chip cookies to all flavors.

The strain of pathogen connected to the outbreak, E. coli O157:H7, causes abdominal cramping, vomiting and a diarrheal illness, often with bloody stools. Most healthy adults recover within a week, but young children and the elderly risk developing complications from the illness, the FDA said.

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