Peanut Corp. plant in Blakley, Georgia had long history of state violations.

West Palm Beach, FL (–The peanut processing plant in Blakley, Georgia, owned by Peanut Corporation of America has a long history of health code violations reported the New York Times. According to Gerogia state health inspection reports, by the state agriculture department, the peanut plant was found to have a long list of food contamination violations in 2006 and 2007. Some of the multiple documented food safety violations were dirty food preparation surfaces and walls plus numerous other violations of food contamination guidelines including food contact surfaces not properly cleaned and sanitized.

Federal officials with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) linked the recent nationwide salmonella epidemic to the Blakely, Georgia plant. The peanut processing plant in Georgia was shut down by federal investigators in the midst of 125 products being voluntarily recalled by nationwide retailers and food companies. Bulk containers of peanut butter sold under the labels King Nut and Parnell’s Pride were the first of all the peanut containing products recalled. Salmonella found in a King Nut peanut butter tub in a Minnesota long term care facility prompted the federal investigation into the Blakely processing plant.

Over 500 people across the country have been sickened by the Salmonella outbreak and 7 injured people have died. A food safety group, Food & Water Watch based in Washington, D.C., is claiming the violations outlined in the Georgia state inspection reports should have prompted punitive action and the FDA should have scrutinized the company more closely for the habitual violations of food safety standards.

According to Wikipedia, China produces 37.5% of the world’s peanuts. The Food and Agricultural Organization of United Nations: Economic and Social Department’s Statistical Division reported as of June 11, 2008, the People’s Republic of China produced 13,090,000 tons of peanuts compared to the United States 1,696,728 tons. Where do America’s peanuts come from?

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