California Widens Recall of Bay Area Firm’s Spices

April 8, 2009

California health officials are widening a recall of spices produced by a Union City company associated with a salmonella outbreak that has sickened 42 people in four states.

The Department of Public Health said the recall of Union International Food Co. spices now includes white and black pepper sold under the Uncle Chen label.

The company has initiated a voluntary recall of its retail pepper products as well as other spice products repackaged in its Union City facility. It previously recalled pepper, paprika, curry, onion powder and other products sold under the Lian How brand name.

The state health department says most of the people sickened appeared to have been exposed to salmonella while eating at Asian restaurants that used the company’s spices.

Officials say the salmonella outbreak has sickened 33 people throughout northern and central California, and nine others in Nevada, Oregon and Washington. No deaths have been reported.

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