Check Your Pantry: King Arthur Just Announced a Flour Recall

Before you start baking, check your bag of flour.

October 08, 2019

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Photo by: eyeshots/Getty Images

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With fall in full swing and holiday season approaching, it’s baking season. If you’ve got the baking bug like me, you’ve probably stocked up on lots of flour especially the all-purpose kind. A slight damper to your baking plans could be that last week the popular brand King Arthur Flour announced a voluntary recall of specific lots of their unbleached all-purpose flour. Instead of swearing off all baking, here’s more details on what exactly was recalled and how you can safely bake over the next few months.

What Was Recalled?

King Arthur Flour found the potential presence of E. Coli 026 when it sampled its products and therefore took precautionary steps to voluntary recall their unbleached all-purpose flour 5-pound and 25-pound bags of specific lots. The flour recalled was milled at an ADM Milling facility in Buffalo, NY and distributed by King Arthur Flour through retailers and distributors nationwide. It was sold through the King Arthur Flour website, catalog and store located in Norwich, Vermont. To date, there have been no confirmed reports of the E. Coli 026 related to this flour, which was produced before February 2019. The list of UPC, “Best Used By Dates” and Lot Codes can be found here. This recall is an expansion of the June 13, 2019 voluntary recall from King Arthur Flour. The six specific Lot Codes and “Best Used By Dates” for that recall can be found here.

What If You Bought Recalled Flour?

E. coli (Escherichia coli) are bacteria found in food, the environment, and intestines of animals and humans. The strain detected in King Arthur Flour can make you sick. Symptoms of E. Coli depend on the strain and may include diarrhea, urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other illnesses.

If you find a match to the recall list, it is advised that you do not consume the product. Return them to where you purchased it for credit or a refund. You can also toss it and submit a claim for a refund or product replacement by calling the King Arthur Hotline at 866-797-9178.

Say "No" to Raw Dough

When baking with flour it’s important to wash your hands, work surfaces and utensils after being in contact with raw flour or raw dough products and never eat the dough. The dry flour can contain harmful bacteria, including E. coli. Bacteria are destroyed only when the flour is cooked.

Other safe baking guidelines include:

  • Don’t let kids play with or eat raw dough, even dough for crafts.
  • Always bake or cook raw dough and batter before eating.
  • Don’t make milkshakes with products that contain raw flour (like with raw cake mix).
  • Do not use raw homemade cookie dough in ice cream. Cookie dough ice cream sold in stores has been treated to kill pathogenic bacteria.
  • Keep flour separate from ready-to-eat foods.

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. She is the author of The Greek Yogurt Kitchen: More Than 130 Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Day.

*This article was written and/or reviewed by an independent registered dietitian nutritionist.

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