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Federal investigators say they have found a Mexico-grown jalapeno pepper that is contaminated with the rare Saintpaul strain of salmonella, which they believe could indicate why more than 1,200 people in 47 states have been sickened – as opposed to tomatoes, which were blamed for the food poisoning as recently as last week.

According to the Wall Street Journal, “The positive sample was found in a Mexican-grown pepper at Agricola Zaragoza Inc., a relatively small distributor in McAllen, Texas … The (FDA) has issued a warning to consumers against eating fresh jalapeño peppers and foods made with them.

“The distributor has recalled all peppers, but declined to comment on the finding. In a news release posted through the FDA, the company said the jalapeño peppers were first shipped since June 30 to Georgia and Texas in 35-pound plastic crates and 50-pound bags without labels or brand names.”

The FDA remains unsure about where the contamination occurred – at the farm where the pepper was grown, or elsewhere in the food chain.

KC's View:
Hope they get it right this time. The tomato industry lost hundreds of millions of dollars when it was identified as a likely source of the salmonella contamination…and then was let off the hook.