Class Action Filed Against ConAgra For The Great Peanut Butter Recall Of 2007

39 individuals who contracted salmonella after consuming Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter have slapped ConAgra with a $5 million class action suit. An additional 2,200 people have expressed interest in joining the action against the agribusiness giant. From the Daily Report:

The product liability suits associated with salmonella-contaminated peanut butter from ConAgra’s Sylvester plant are flowing into U.S. District Court in Atlanta from across the country, including Missouri, South Carolina, Tennessee, Washington, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida and Oklahoma. Multiple plaintiffs have complained they were sickened multiple times because they unwittingly continued to eat tainted peanut butter that ConAgra did not recall until February.

ConAgra has offered to send anyone who fell ill a coupon good for one free jar of Peter Pan peanut butter.

ConAgra faces 39 suits over bad peanut butter [Daily Report]
Peanut Butter Salmonella Class Action [PeanutButterClassAction.com]
(AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Comments

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  1. mantari says:

    I STILL WANT MY HONEY PEANUT BUTTER AND CANNOT FIND IT ON THE SHELVES. THIS MAKES ME ANGRY EVERY TIME I SHOP, AND EVERY TIME THE SUBJECT OF PEANUT BUTTER COMES UP.

    Thank you.

  2. Lin-Z [linguist on duty] says:

    a coupon so they can all get more tainted peanut butter? nice comeback.

  3. mammalpants says:

    id be SUPER pissed if it wasnt for the newly redesigned label! it has completely changed my perception of the tainted and poisonous peanut-buttery batch of death. thanks, conagra!
    your dirty floors and 50-year old rusty equipment works for me as long as you obey the 5-second rule.

  4. timmus says:

    There are a lot of alternatives to ConAgra products and ConAgra peanut butter. Better yet there are organic peanut butters. Don’t support goliath agribusiness.

  5. ShadowFalls says:

    Accidents do happen people. Just because one batch was tainted doesn’t make everything they ever produce in the future tainted. How a company handles things is a way of how they care.

    If they offer a voluntary recall rather than a mandatory recall by the government, it shows they actually care. If the government mandatory recalls a certain batch and the company recalls not just that batch, but everything they have, it shows they actually care.

    Mistakes do happen, but if you get sick by something and then go back and have that same something that made you sick, how smart are you? I mean really…

  6. zannadu says:

    @Mantari

    lol… I relate. I sure miss my Peter Pan. I stare sadly at the shelves every week. Sure, there’s OTHER peanut butter, but it’s not the same.

    Rumor is it will be back on the shelves at the end of the summer.

  7. forever_knight says:

    i have been in mourning since peter pan was recalled. no other pb compares. I NEED MY FIX!!!!!!!!!!

  8. royuncg says:

    Choosy Moms, Chose JIF!!

  9. LiC says:

    I was going to make peanut butter cookies with my last jar of Peter Pan, but then I’d be the one who fed my co-workers cookies that may have been contaminated with salmonella. Wouldn’t the baking have killed off the bacteria?

    I’d take those coupons; Peter Pan is still the best stuff to use for peanut butter cookies.

  10. rhombopteryx says:

    @ShadowFalls:
    Yeah, accidents happen, but this was someone’s “accident” that leaked INTO your peanut butter- this is fecal bacteria we’re talking about! The measure of whether a company cares is not the size of its recall, it’s whether it keeps the sh%^& out of the peanut butter in the first place. I hope Con Agra is intelligent enough to recognize that feeding people fecal material causes “emotional suffering” and they don’t try and argue over that – heckuva spot to put the lawyers in.

  11. lincolnparadox says:

    @rhombopteryx: Salmonella can be found in a number of other materials otehr than “fecal.” Chances are, and I haven’t read much about the source, this salmonella outbreak came from a mixture of contaminated honey and poor cleaning practices. But, there’s poop on every agriproduct at one point.

    I wouldn’t sue, but these people have a valid case so long as they have proof that they bought the peanut butter and consumed it before the recall. If they bought it afterwards, they should sue their grocer. If they ate it afterwards, their case fizzles. Still, this whole thing seems like an attempt by attorney’s to make some money.

  12. Spooty says:

    Whoa – I’m lucky I spotted this story. I happen to have a half-eaten jar that is part of this recall.
    I don’t eat much peanut butter, so I can’t remember when I last ate some of this – it was in the back of the fridge. But it’s expiring in 2 weeks anyway (“BEST BY AUG282007″).
    I didn’t get sick from this stuff (I don’t think), and, ambulance-chasing lawyers aside, people who did get sick should get recompense.
    But still, it’s kind of a ripoff that the FDA advises us to toss this, and thousands (millions?) of consumers who DIDN’T get sick, are still out a buck or two worth of goods each.
    In my opinion, ConAgra should institute some kind of retail program where you can turn in your jar for another jar, or at least a coupon for one.

  13. Spooty says:

    @Spooty:

    Doh, it’s sure hard to get the full story when Google shows all sorts of lawsuit-related links.

    In a nutshell, refunds are (still – I just called the toll-free number) available directly from the manufacturer. (You can try to return “Good Value” brand to Wal-Mart, but they may hassle you, as another thread mentions.)
    It doesn’t say what kind of refund you’ll get, but you don’t need to send in a receipt, either – just the product lid.
    You’ll be out the envelope and postage, but at least ConAgra will be out-of-pocket too, and you’ll get something back as a consumer.

    Link to refund info (linked from Wal-Mart)
    [walmartstores.com]

  14. rhombopteryx says:

    @lincolnparadox:
    I entirely agree, there’s poop on every agriproduct at one point. The thing is, we as humans can do things like wash hands, wash tools, clean chickens, etc. to make sure that the poop (or the honey with poop, or the leaky roof leaking rainwater onto poop, etc.) stays out of the food. Peter Pan was just too careless to do that in this case.
    Salmonella is a fecal bacteria, it lives and grows in intestines. It may show up in other places, but it invariably comes from poop. People catch it by (and this is direct from the CDC website) “eating foods contaminated with animal feces.” So excuses aside, the contamination was poop that wasn’t cleaned up. It may have been poop spread to dirt spread to a machine, or poop spread from droppings into rain runoff dripping on a jar, but it’s still poop.

  15. BalknChain says:

    If the initial report of a roof leak above the empty jar line is to be believed, it would most likely be bird fecal matter. I work as QA in the food industry so I know “things happen”, but a roof leak above equipment is cause for a plant’s affected line to be shut down immediately pending repair since it is not potable water. The same goes for condensation. I am also a Peter Pan addict and we had 7 of the recalled lot that had to be returned. We had opened and eaten out of one, but thankfully none of us got sick. We mailed the lids and destroyed the jars per ConAgra’s initial instructions. They later changed it to being able to return it to the store where purchased. I’m shocked to hear it is not back in some areas. It’s been back at my local ShopRite in NJ for months now.

  16. BalknChain says:

    @BalknChain: Wow, look at the date. Wonder why this came up as new? ugh