On Monday, Unilever announced a limited voluntary recall of Skippy Reduced Fat Creamy Peanut Butter Spread and Skippy Reduced Fat Super Chunk Peanut Butter Spread, after a routine sampling of products indicated possible contamination with salmonella.
No other Skippy products are affected by the recall. So far, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), with which Unilever is coordinating the recall, has received no reports of illness associated with the recalled products. (More on Time.com: Health-Washing: Is ‘Healthy’ Fast Food for Real?)
Symptoms of infection with salmonella bacteria include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps within 12 to 72 hours. Symptoms generally last for four to seven days, and most healthy people recover without treatment. However, in rare cases, salmonella poisoning can be very serious or fatal, particularly in small children, those with weakened immune systems or the elderly.
According to the FDA’s press release on the Skippy recall:
The product was distributed to retail outlets in Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.
The affected product, which is packaged in 16.3 oz plastic jars, is as follows:
UPCs: 048001006812 and 048001006782 (located on the side of the jar’s label below the bar code.)
Best-If-Used-By Dates: MAY1612LR1, MAY1712LR1, MAY1812LR1, MAY1912LR1, MAY2012LR1 and MAY2112LR1 (Stamped on the lid of the jar.)
Consumers who have purchased products with the above UPCs and Best-If-Used-By dates should throw them out immediately. Unilever is offering replacement coupons to consumers; you can contact the company toll-free at 800-453-3432 and speak to a representative Mon. to Fri. from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST (or 24 hours a day for general information on the recall). (More on Time.com: Senate Passes Bill to Overhaul Food Safety)
If we may, however, Healthland would also like to take this opportunity to remind consumers that low-fat peanut butter “spread” lists corn syrup solids and sugar as its second and third ingredients. It may be lower in fat than regular peanut butter, but it’s still relatively high in carbs and sugar. For instance, while Skippy Creamy Peanut Butter has 16 g of total fat (including 3 g of saturated fat) and 7 g of total carbohydrates (including 3 g of sugar) per 2-tbsp serving, Skippy Reduced Fat Creamy Peanut Butter Spread has 12 g of total fat (including 2 g of saturated fat) and 15 g of total carbohydrates (including 4 g of sugar) per serving.
Instead of mass-produced peanut butter, you could try an all-natural substitute — many grocery stores even let you grind peanuts into a paste: a single ingredient treat.