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FDA Finds Salmonella Bacteria in MDH Sambhar Masala Sold in the US

MDH, a household name in Indian cooking, is recalling its products from retail stores in California for contamination that can cause diarrhoea, cramps, and fever within days of consuming it.
FDA recalls famous Indian spice brand MDH sambhar masala for being contaminated with salmonella bacteria
Photo via Pixabay

A famous Indian spice company, which is a household name in its country of origin, has announced a recall of its products at the retail stores of California after the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found salmonella contamination in them. MDH, a family-run company known for its wide variety of spices for Indian cooking, had to recall its Sambhar Masala from the shelves once the drug regulator of the region declared the products unfit for consumption. “This product was tested by FDA through a certified laboratory to be positive for salmonella,” reads the FDA official release on the move.


For the uninitiated, salmonella contamination can cause salmonellosis, a bacterial foodborne illness that leads to diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, and fever within a few days of consuming it.

"In some persons, however, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized,” adds the FDA statement “Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact their health care provider.”

Even as the FDA clarifies that “no illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem”, it’s yet to be established whether the same MDH products have been distributed in India. Previously, the FDA has detained the imports of MDH spices for being on the Red List of salmonella detection alert. But for now, the FDA has asked those who’ve already bought it to bring them back to the stores. “Consumers who have purchased the MDH SAMBAR MASALA, 3.5 oz (100g) are urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund,” it said.

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