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FDA Reports Disturbing Rates of Spice Contamination

The New York Times reports that the FDA has issued a report warning of contamination in imported spices. About 12% of spices brought into the United States contain contamination in the form of “insect parts, rodent hairs and other things.” The FDA also found that “nearly 7 percent of spice imports examined by federal inspectors were contaminated with salmonella, a toxic bacteria that can cause severe illness in humans.” It is speculated that the contamination is due to improper practices in factory manufacturing. Federal authorities are concerned because contamination from insects is not easily resolved and because insects can be a source of salmonella poisoning. They are also concerned because, “people often fail to remember eating spices when asked what foods might have sickened them, so problems related to spices could be seriously underreported.”

Read it in The New York Times.

Read the FDA report.