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FDA Looks into Tainted Produce at a Texas Processing Plant

The FDA has decided to further look into a case involving a Texas processing plant that may have distributed contaminated produce.  The SanGar Produce & Processing Company has been shut down by Texas health officials and a recall has been issued that includes all produce that has passed through the plant since January of 2010.  The plant has been identified as a link to contaminated celery that has made 6 people gravely sick this past year, four of whom died.  SanGar issued their recall on Wednesday, but a decision still has to be made by the FDA on whether or not to expand the recall. 

When the plant was inspected, health inspectors found problems with the plant’s sanitation, which included a condensation leak over a food production area.  The health inspectors are now trying to determine exactly whom the produce was sold to. Carrie Williams, who is the Texas Health department spokeswoman claims that they requested the plant to voluntarily close although the company refused, which then deemed necessary for the plant to be shut down by the Health department and a recall issued.  Kenneth Sanquist Jr., the company’s president, claims that he questions the validity of the state’s lab results because he believes that flawed methods were used to collect its samples. 

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The department claims that they will stand by their lab results and analysis collected.  Health officials claim that produce from this particular plant was sold to restaurants, schools, and hospitals.  SanGar has been prohibited from reopening their plant without the approval from the agency.   

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